Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Hot and Thirsty!

This morning a local Pittsburgh TV channel showed workers trying to fix a water main break and residents lining up to get water from "water buffalos" brought in by their township. I didn't get details so I "Googled" - "Pittsburgh residents without water" - and found that at least four different areas in and around the city are without water due to water main breaks. The particular area I saw on TV apparently has not had water for eight days and can expect two more days or more without water.

So I guess the conclusion is that Pittsburgh is a hot and thirsty city - at least in some parts. In Manorville, (according to one news article I found) Nancy Pierce can see gallons and gallons of water from her home. She lives facing the Allegheny River. But the water in the river isn't safe to drink. It is sort of like the words spoken by the Ancient Mariner (written by English poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge): "Water, water everywhere and not a drop to drink." Almost every news story I read emphasized the necessity of boiling water for the residents of areas effected by the water shortages.

Especially in hot weather, the human body craves water. Our bodies scream to us that we need to rehydrate.

Jesus Himself craved water one hot day. John 4 describes Jesus' encounter with a woman at a well where he sat down to rest. The woman came alone in the heat of the day (at noon) to draw water. She was a pariah in her village because of the wild life she chose to live - had lived with five husbands and was now living with a man she wasn't married to. (The Bible is such an honest book!) She didn't come when the other women did. She didn't want to face their stares, cold shoulders and jeers. So, she came alone.

Jesus asked her for a drink. Just the simple request for water started a conversation that changed her life forever. Jesus knew that she needed far more than water for her body. Her heart needed the "Living Water" which He is! Jesus said to her, "Everyone who drinks this water (the water from the well) will get thirsty again and again. Anyone who drinks the water I give will never thirst - not ever. The water I give will be an artesian spring within, gushing fountains of endless life." (The Message, vs. 13 - 14))

The woman at the well got water for both her body and her heart that hot awesome day when she met Jesus. Her life and heart were changed forever. And her story changed her entire village!

Jeremiah 2:13 describes the other response to being heart thirsty: "My people have committed a compound sin: they've walked out on Me, the Fountain of fresh flowing waters, and then dug cisterns - cisterns that leak (are broken), cisterns that are no better than sieves." (The Message)

The thirsty people in Pittsburgh don't have water due to a broken water main (a broken cistern). They are isolated to a few areas in the city. But all across this city people are heart thirsty. They desperately need God's "water of life." It's the only way to get a restored heart (and cure heart thirst)!

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