CQ Plus April 7-13 2012

Water for the Soul

Preface: Too often evangelism and witnessing are seen as the pastor’s job alone; this attitude is wrong.

Those were dark and lonely days for the young shepherd from Bethlehem. As he hid from a jealous king who wanted to take his life, David probably wondered if he would ever see his family and friends again. There was no place for him to go; no one would have him. The place where he had eventually chosen to hide was a cave that sheltered others like him fleeing from some form of persecution.

How he longed to be home—to taste again the sweet water from the well in Bethlehem. But he could not risk leaving the protection of the cave. Enemies were everywhere. Tired and miserable, David probably thought he was the loneliest person in the world. Then something extraordinary happened in that dark, depressing place, something that David would never forget for the rest of his life.

During this moment of utter despair, three men in the cave, spurred by their sympathies for David, did something outrageously risky. They crossed enemy lines in the middle of the night, drew water from the well near David’s hometown, and somehow carried it back to him. When they brought that precious water to David, tears must have surely welled up in his eyes as he beheld their love offering for him, a gift that they had secured at risk to their own lives.

Overwhelmed with gratitude, David could not drink—he could not speak. It was a holy moment, a moment of revelation. His mere desire for a cup of water had been met and transcended by something far more beautiful.

God knows our deepest desires and fulfills them even before we can fully understand what they are. Just as He knew that David needed the comfort of friendship in that far-off forbidding place, He knows what you and I need today. Some of us may be suffering from pangs of loneliness right now. We long to see familiar faces, to taste home cooking again, or to recognize the friendly outlines of home from afar off. It may not be possible for us to have these things presently. But take heart; God knows our needs. He can still provide for us in a strange place.

The warmth of human touch and companionship is a gift that God Himself first gave, and it is continually being given through fellow human beings touched by His Spirit. The gift fulfills our collective need as children of God to comfort one another. What a privilege to receive such fellowship from others, to receive it through something as meaningful as a simple drink of water.