Once again, I have chosen a title that makes my target audience squeal. After all, being full of God is a good thing, right? Jesus said he was living water (John 4: 13-14) and we should drink deeply of him. And the more you have of God, the better life is, so being full is wonderful. But it’s also risky. In fact, it’s the most dangerous place for a Christian to be. Why?
Because when we get full… we stop drinking.
Thirsty, dying people drink deep, trying to get as much water as they can. People who aren’t thirsty stay away from the faucet. Such are many Christians, myself included. I have a nasty habit of falling at God’s feet, desperate with a need, but when he fill that need, I get it into my head that I don’t need him anymore. Now, don’t get me wrong, when I need him, I’ll come right back. But until then, I got this, Jesus. Any amens out there?
But let’s stick with the water metaphor. Even if you’re full, you still need water. You may not need to dunk your head in the sink, but you can’t just stop drinking. Water is a need, whether it’s immediate or not. Same with food, sleep, love, all that good stuff. You may not be desperate for those things, but they’re still necessities of life.
You can survive without water for about three days, right? More or less? But do you wait two to three days between drinks? Of course you don’t. You’d throw your body into such a see-saw of healthy-dehydrated-healthy, that you’d probably wreck your system. You don’t wait until your tongue swells, your organs shrivel, and you pee turns kidney-damage brown. You drink water every day if you can help it, every few hours at the very least. And if Jesus is living water, as he says he is, why do we treat him any differently?
I suppose it’s the problem of having all your needs met: you get comfortable and forget what need feels like. But just as dehydrating and refilling regularly can harm your body, so can spiritual dehydration harm your soul. There are times to drink deeply, and Jesus invites us to do so no matter how many times we’ve allowed ourselves to dehydrate. But he also made it possible to take regular sips and gulps.
Prayer, Bible reading, fellowship with believers, study, serving, celebration, reflection, confession, these are all things that let us sip from God’s cup daily. That doesn’t mean you have to do all these things daily per se, they’re simply all option. But the more you sip, the less you need to gulp.
Sip, gulp, whatever you do, don’t stop drinking.