Alive: how fresh watering from God enlivens us

I am no gardener, but this summer I became responsible for keeping our tiny plot alive. With my husband too incapacitated to do it, and no other help on the horizon, I was forced to take my child-size watering can out to thirsty plants on a regular basis.

It was a question of pacing myself, taking several short trips to the sink and back again over the course of a day – and praying for rain.

My arms and legs ached tremendously from the unaccustomed effort. Some days I had to concede defeat, though I discovered unexpected benefits.

Before long, the plants and I were good friends as I mothered them. Spending extra time outdoors made me more aware than ever before of the wonder of living, growing things, how vital it is for them to be kept alive by liquid refreshment.

One day I noticed our geranium plants had limp leaves and dry brown stems. They were barely alive.

alive-geranium-plant-dying-woj-acwIt was suggested that I leave them alone and concentrate on the healthier plants. A stubborn streak in me took over and I watered them anyway – with no expectations, only a determination to give them opportunity to recover.

Nothing happened for ages, then as I stepped out the door one day I was greeted by glowing flowers and shiny new leaves. My faith was tangibly rewarded!

It got me thinking how we are completely dependent on God for daily nourishment. He freely supplies all we need to thrive and grow spiritually as well as physically. Yet there are times when we fail to see we are dry and thirsty, lifeless, in fact.

alive-geranium-plant-new-life-woj-acwIn reading a familiar Bible story recently, I saw how easy it is to allow guilt and shame to keep us away from others and from God’s best.

We can neglect to see how much we thirst inwardly for God’s living water. And how we ache on the inside for His loving presence.

We can neglect to see how much we thirst inwardly for God's living water Click To Tweet

I found myself reinterpreting the story via a lens of poetry…

Living Water

She blinked, wiping sweat from her brow

as she frowned, surprised at the stranger

smiling his request. This was equivalent

to her own risky behaviour as viewed

in other people’s accusing eyes

He seemed nonplussed, quite nonchalant

in fact, as he gave his responses

while she toiled to meet his need…

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