I hydrate. A lot. Especially in the summer. Drink, drink, drink. Water, water, water. And when I started running, I hydrated even more.
Well, since it’s not summer any more and not quite so hot, and since I haven’t run consistently in a long, long, long time…let’s just say I haven’t been hydrating quite as much. And I can tell.
I’m feeling a bit lethargic. My mental clarity isn’t quite as sharp. When I do run, I cramp up right away.
It’s hard to believe that something as simple as drinking water (or not) can have such a dramatic impact on our bodies. But it does. In fact, dehydration can become a life threatening condition. Go more than 3 days without water, and you’ll die.
Our bodies can’t rely only on the water we drank yesterday. We need a fresh supply every day.
On the last day, the climax of the festival, Jesus stood and shouted to the crowds, “Anyone who is thirsty may come to me! Anyone who believes in me may come and drink! For the Scriptures declare, ‘Rivers of living water will flow from his heart.’” (When he said “living water,” he was speaking of the Spirit, who would be given to everyone believing in him. But the Spirit had not yet been given, because Jesus had not yet entered into his glory.) (John 7:37-39)
Our bodies need water. Daily. And so do our spirits…living water. We need to drink daily from the Rivers of Living Water that Jesus was talking about here. We need to drink daily – and drink deeply – of His presence. Of His Spirit. We need to continually be being filled with Him, like Paul said in Ephesians.
The Bible refers to the indwelling presence of God as wells and as rivers both here and in John 4. And I love that before anything can bubble up in us or flow out of us, we first have to drink.
If you’re feeling a bit edgy or snappy or pressured, or if you’re feeling fatigued and not quite as sharp, you may just need to take a drink. You may just need to rehydrate.
When things are busy (hectic, chaotic, overwhelming), it’s easy to forget. It’s easy to think, “I’m too busy to sit down and take a drink. I don’t have time for that. I drank yesterday, or the day before, or was it last week? That’ll have to do for now.”
But if we’ll just take a step back, sit down for just a minute or two, and take a drink, I think we’ll find it a bit easier to do what needs done.
And really, you don’t even have to sit down to do it. You can drink in the car. You can drink while you’re working. You can drink while you’re doing dishes or the laundry or the shopping or the wrapping.
Drinking in of the Rivers of Living Water is simply an awareness of who abides within. It’s simply turning our affections, our minds, our worship, to the Giver of Life. To the source of the River. To the One who sustains us with His presence.
Sometimes we try to fill that need with other things. Some people drink pop or juice or coffee or tea when they’re thirsty. “I guess it’s better than nothing, right?” Actually, sometimes it can be worse and dehydrate us even more.
And when we start seeing the effects of spiritual dehydration, sometimes we try to fill that with other things, too:
“Oh I’m just tired. If I just sleep it will be better.”
“I’m Hangry. I just need to eat.”
“I’m just going to watch this TV show and let my mind rest for a few minutes.”
“I just need to sit down in some peace and quiet for a few minutes and I’ll have all the peace I need.”
Nothing hydrates the body quite like water, and there isn’t anything that is going to refresh and renew and strengthen and rehydrate the spirit like Him. Like His presence.
Why am I writing this today? Well, it’s because I realized this morning that I was dehydrated. And the minute I recognized it and prayed, “Father, I need a drink of that river that flows from the throne,” His presence brought such refreshing…while I was doing my makeup.
He’s right there. We just need to turn the faucet on and take a drink.
What Are you Drinking is a podcast that goes right along with this if you want to take a listen. I’m praying for you today that His presence and life would infuse your spirit today and for those wells to bubble up and the rivers to flow out of you as He fills you with His presence.