BY THE SEA, BY THE SEA… John 7:37-39

It was back in 1959 that my parents first rented an apartment right on the beach, at the ocean, in Ocean City, New Jersey.  For two glorious weeks!  They rented the same place for a few years, always the last week in July and the first week of August.  My father said that those were the best weather weeks of the summer.  I didn’t care when we went, as along as we did!  I loved it.  Still do.  My wife can tell when I get morose and change my name to ‘gloomy Gus’, that it’s time for a trip back home, to Ocean City, the one in New Jersey!

Have to keep going back.  ‘By the sea, by the sea, by the beautiful sea…’  That’s my song but only for a few weeks or a month.   Jesus talked about water, living water.  If you had it, you would never thirst again.  Really?  What did He mean?

It was on the last day of the Feast of Tabernacles.  He’s in Jerusalem at the Temple.  He proclaims: “If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink.  Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water'”(John 7: 37-38).  The Gospel writer, John, tells us that Jesus is referring to the Holy Spirit, who will be given to all believers.  Plain and simple.  When you believe in Him, more flows your way.  More of what counts in life.  More from within where it’s private, genuine, protected from being cast before any swine you encounter.  More love, more forgiveness, more purpose…more and more of whatever God has for us.

Rarely it’s things.  Often it’s something you can’t put your finger on.  Something indescribable.  Something money can’t buy.   That’s why the world, such as it is, doesn’t have a clue.  How can it?  Without Jesus, they have no Holy Spirit, no living water bubbling up into all kinds of thirst-quenching wonders.  Without Jesus, it’s just dryness and thirst.  Emptiness and unfulfilled pawing and craving.

But with Jesus, when we know Him and love Him and really want to serve Him, we find that the ‘water’ He pours into us is energizing, satisfying and fulfilling.  Within us.  Open your mouth to Him.  Ask Jesus for more of His living water.   All from Him.  Not one drop earned.  His gift.  Thank you, Lord…

Prayer:  Thank you, Jesus, for giving us the living water of your Holy Spirit.   For Jesus’ sake.  Amen.

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