My flowers have taught me something this spring. We’ve had so much rain in Southern California this year, more than in a decade at least. Everything is green, and the flowers are blooming profusely, but I noticed something very interesting.
When I cut them and bring them in the house they aren’t lasting like they normally do–two days tops. I wondered at this. I haven’t noticed it before, but this year it happened over and over. At first I thought it was because it was warmer in the house–but that has been the same years before.
And then suddenly it hit me. It must be the difference in water. We haven’t used municipal water outside at all this spring, and if I have watered flowers here and there, it’s been collected rain water. But when I bring them in the house I put them in faucet water. Could that be the difference?
Of course you know what came to mind–living water. There is such a difference between the results of city water and rain water. It’s like they are saying, “What is this you’re putting me in? We’ve had the real thing!” My neighbor loves gardening too, and we have been talking about it this year. We can keep them alive by watering, but they don’t thrive. When it rains everything changes–it’s like the plants come alive. They know the difference! And this year we’ve had lightning too, which really helps. (Someone told me it gives nitrogen. I haven’t verified it.)
The difference is amazing–like Jesus saying to the woman in Samaria beside the well* “If you knew who was asking you for a drink, you would ask me and I would give you living water. Any one who drinks it will never thirst again.”
She has no idea what he is saying, but she is intrigued, and takes the bait. “Sir, you have nothing to draw with, and why are you talking to me? Jewish men don’t speak to Samaritan women, Are you greater than Jacob who built this well?” She is astute and knows this is no ordinary conversation, no ordinary man. And her spirit is thirsty so she asks for his water.
He tells her to get her husband and they will talk. She says she doesn’t have one. And then he proceeds to show her he knows her whole life. This really gets her attention!
She diverts him to “I see you are a prophet, lets talk about worship–you Jews think we are wrong in our worship.” He gives her a four sentence definition of worship, and she tells him she knows Messiah is coming and will set them all straight. He tells her he is the Messiah! He’s never flat out told anyone that yet! And a woman!
She forgets what she is doing, leaves her water jug and runs to the men of the city to tell them what just happened!
And she is an outcast of society! She doesn’t even have women friends–why she is at the well at noon. She wouldn’t have a Face book page. But she is open to God’s Spirit, and His impressions, and He blesses her.
It’s makes all the difference. Like the difference in flowers drinking city water or God’s gift of water in rain–recognizing God’s gift in who Jesus is and drinking in His presence, still communicated by the Spirit just as it was then to an outcast woman of Samaria, makes all the difference in if your spirit is thirsty or not. If you thrive or not. If you make time to hear him ask, “Give me an opportunity to give to you. Trust Me.”