No Water . . . At All?
Can you imagine a world without water? Think about it. Nearly every single daytime or nighttime, waking or sleeping, human activity is dependent on water. Why, if water disappeared from this earth, we would last around three days. “Dehydration happens quickly, causing extreme thirst, fatigue, and ultimately, organ failure and death. A person may go from feeling thirsty and slightly sluggish on the first day with no water to having organ failure by the third” (www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/325174).
And yet our friends in Jackson, Mississippi, at this very moment of writing, are living—all 250,000 of them—with unusable water. You can turn the faucet on and eventually there may gurgle forth a brown, gritty trickle of water. But no usable amount of water or water pressure for flushing toilets, brushing teeth, taking showers, washing dishes, washing anything. No fighting fires for sure! And on top of that, bottled water is almost non-existent—they’ve run of it, too.
“Since 29 July, households have been under orders to boil all water for drinking, cooking and brushing teeth, to fend off bacterial infections. Now the crisis looks poised to escalate with the possibility the main treatment facility, OB Curtis, could fail completely after its central pumps were seriously damaged in the wake of recent flooding of the Pearl River, following heavy rains” (www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/aug/31/jackson-mississippi-no-running-water-flooding).
For months authorities have been warning of the collapse of Jackson’s water treatment plant. “The city’s mayor, Chokwe Antar Lumumba, said the water infrastructure had suffered from three decades of chronic underfunding” (ibid). Well, for Jackson, Mississippi, it’s “apocalypse now.”
Are you living without water? Not the faucet kind of water, but heart-flow water? She was, the Samaritan woman Jesus engaged there at that noonday well. Sure, she had all the H2O water she needed, but her soul was parched, dehydrated, dying, really. Jesus knew it—hence His offer. Pointing to the well, He spoke: “‘Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life’” (John 4:13-14).
But that’s the problem, isn’t it? We take for granted that even Jesus’ kind of thirst-slaking water will always be their mañana, so why worry now? “‘[But] the days are coming,' declares the Sovereign Lord, 'when I will send a famine through the land—not a famine of food or a thirst for water, but a famine of hearing the words of the Lord. People will stagger from sea to sea and wander from north to east, searching for the word of the Lord, but they will not find it’” (Amos 8:11-12).
Then isn’t it a no-brainer for us to keep Jesus' spiritual faucets wide open with His water of life—while we have it: “‘Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. Whoever believes in Me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them’” (John 7:37-38).
But wait a minute—keep reading: “Jesus did not convey the idea that merely one draft of the water of life would suffice the receiver. . . . The cisterns will be emptied, the pools become dry; but our Redeemer is an inexhaustible fountain. We may drink, and drink again, and ever find a fresh supply. . . . From this source [we] may draw strength and grace sufficient for all [our] needs” (Desire of Ages 187).
It is the Bible’s last offer: “‘Let the one who is thirsty come; and let the one who wishes take the free gift of the water of life’” (Revelation 22:17).
Poor Jackson, Mississippi. So thirsty, so dry, but no water. Poor you and poor me, if besides the thundering Niagara of Jesus’ living water, we live with parched souls and die of dehydration.
It must not be!
So let the one who is thirsty, drink. The fountain still flows.