Before you settle in to read this post, I would invite you to do something first. Go to your shelf or table and pick up your Bible. Then go to the kitchen and pour yourself a glass of water. Now set the glass filled with water beside your Bible on the table nearest you and begin reading.
There is a book on my shelf that I enjoy reading from time to time which is written by Max Lucado. It bears the title Come Thirsty. Actually, this book no longer resides on my shelf as I have given it to someone searching for God’s activity in his life. It is a very good resource for those who may feel distant from God and also for those who would enjoy a “spiritual pick me up” if you will. I do love reading this book (I’ll have to get another copy when I’m done writing this) and hearing the invitation of our Loving God to come to Him as a child comes to his/her father.
We are in the midst of our annual Lenten pilgrimage toward Easter and it is appropriate that we too ponder how it is we approach our Father in heaven. It is a time to earnestly study God’s Word and to pray for heightened awareness of God’s presence in our daily lives. It is a time to look deep inside our lives in order that we may see ourselves for who we are as sinners, yet also to see ourselves for whose we are, God’s beloved children redeemed by the blood of Christ. Lent is a time when Christians all the world over take time to reflect upon God’s call to follow the example of Christ Jesus, loving God with all our heart, loving our neighbor and ministering to the needs of those whom God places within our midst. The more we ponder these things, the more Christians realize their thirst for God’s amazing grace, His forgiveness, love and kindness.
As God’s people, during Lent we are metaphorically traveling the Jerusalem road toward the cross of Good Friday. The cross is where the powers sin and evil meet the powers of God’s righteousness and mercy. The events of the cross are the focal point of Lent, so powerful their message of God’s salvation through the sacrifice of His Son. Yet, weighed down by the burdens of everyday life, all too often we focus on worldly things and fail to realize the full impact of what Jesus has done for God’s beloved people. Pulled in several directions at a time, we all too often stray from the Lenten journey’s path. Life becomes a blur of one day following the next and before you know it, we have lost touch with our Lord and Savior.
In order that you may fully realize God’s awesome power and love in your life, I invite you to “come thirsty.” Come thirsty to worship where all may join hearts and voices in praise and thanksgiving for all that God has done and continues to do. Come thirsty to hear the message of God’s deliverance of His chosen people so long ago at the time of the Exodus. Come hear the promise of God as He gives Moses the Ten Commandments, calling the children of Israel to live a godly life according to the Law. I invite you to come thirsty for God’s love; to hear His gospel proclaimed, His Word preached and to realize the abundance of His mercy and grace.
As you come to worship I also invite you to come to Sunday school where you will learn even more of the goodness of our Lord and Savior. Come thirsty for the fellowship we share as God’s gathered people, united with Christ through the waters of our baptism. Come thirsty to learn how you too are called as a disciple of Jesus Christ, empowered and equipped for ministry and sent into the world for the sake of those who are neediest among us.
Finally, I invite you ponder the Bible and the glass of water before you. God’s written Word proclaiming His grace made available through His Word made flesh. As you open the pages of Holy Scripture you will be reminded that God made water to be a sign of His unfailing love and His promise to deliver His people. Through water and the Word, God washes us in the flood of our baptism, pouring out the gifts of faith and the Holy Spirit, forgiveness of sins and the promise of everlasting life.
As God’s people, we are on a journey. We are on a journey to the cross of Good Friday where we may cast our sin and brokenness at Jesus’ feet, the place where the powers of sin and evil meet the powers of God’s righteousness and mercy. Come thirsty for the good things of God and be refreshed through the water and the Word. Then at journey’s end, we will all meet once again at the empty tomb of Easter, where the defeated power of death meets the awesome power of God’s eternal life in Christ Jesus. Come thirsty to God’s house, and be refreshed with the water that gives life forever and ever.