People typically do not think much of water. One of the great benefits of living in a western country is a seemingly endless supply of clean water to drink, bath in, with which to launder clothes and wash dishes. We even have enough to fill swimming pools and supply great water parks for our entertainment and enjoyment. Water is everywhere. You can get it from the tap or have somebody to fill plastic bottles for you and buy it a few ounces at a time. But every once and a while the supply is cut off.
Maybe you have experienced when water is turned off. There are a lot of reasons for this. Maybe a pipe is being repaired. Maybe there has been a problem with the purification process, and the lines need to be flushed. Maybe you do not pay your water bill. Suddenly the water that seemed to be everywhere is everywhere but where you need it. Dishes and clothes cannot be washed. Showers and baths cannot be taken. Toilets cannot be flushed. And, most importantly, you cannot get a drink of water. Water that must be taken in to maintain the 65 percent ratio that makes up the human adult body.
It does not take very long before you start to feel thirsty. The more active you are the faster you will get thirsty and the more important finding water will become. The picture above was taken along the Camino de Santiago de Compostela (the pilgrimage route in Spain). There is nothing special about this water point. In fact, it is rather plain compared to some I encountered along the way. And that is the point. The people of Spain understand how critical it is for people to remain hydrated – to be able to quench their thirst – that public water sources are commonplace. They are clearly marked – Agua Potable – Drinkable Water.
As the pilgrim walks, especially on warmer days, these water points seem to beckon: Come, drink, quench your thirst, be refreshed. The pilgrim stops, drinks, fills a water bottle, and continues on the pilgrimage that shall find its end at the Cathedral de Santiago de Compostela. It is a place and time for people to rejoice that they made it, to celebrate their arrival, and to experience the joy of a successful pilgrimage. But it would have never been possible without the Agua Potable.
The Church has long considered life on Earth as one’s pilgrimage to eternity. Those who are Christians are considered on a pilgrimage to the very Kingdom of God. During this pilgrimage, we face trials and obstacles, warm and even hot days, we work and we rest, we expend what is within us and, naturally, we thirst. We thirst for God’s refreshing of our spirits. Sadly, we frequently do not even recognize how thirsty we have become. In fact, we can become absolutely bone dry and not even realize it.
There is, however, a water point for our souls. A water point that beckons: Come, drink, quench your thirst, refresh your soul. A water point marked: Agua Viva – Living Water. Jesus said … “whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” (John 4:13-14)
How long does it take to drink a glass of water? It takes even less time to ask God to fill you with His Living Water. Agua Potable for your body and Agua Viva for your soul. Drink deeply from each.