As a kid, I loved neighborhood football games with my friends. We’d all dress up in our pads, donning our favorite team’s helmet. Mine was a white Baltimore Colt helmet, with royal blue horseshoes painted above the ear holes and Johnny Unitas’ number 19 on the back.
When I ride by our old neighborhood today, the friend’s yard we played in looks so small. However, we wore ourselves out chasing each other up and down the field in the heat of many a South Carolina afternoon. And, on the rare occasion when it snowed, we’d play smear the man with the ball.
At “half time” and at the end of the game we’d all line up to guzzle water from the garden hose attached to my friend’s house. To this day, the satisfaction of quenching my dry, parched throat with what seemed like gallons of gushing, cool water, is still etched in my memory.
Now that I think back on it, the water probably wasn’t that cold, but we relished the refreshing running water.
We were thirsty.
Addressing thirst, Jesus once said, “If any man is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being shall flow rivers of living water.” John 7:37b-38
Whether we realize it or not, we were created with a longing for more, a deep thirst.
The wisest man in the world once wrote that God put eternity in the hearts of men.
The plan is for our great thirst to be quenched by God himself, but so many of us have filled our lives with so much crap, we don’t even know we’re thirsty.
Perhaps that’s why Jesus said, “if” any man is thirsty.
If we’ve crammed our lives with possessions, achievements, pleasures, popularity and other earthly treasures, we may not even know we need Jesus.
However, nothing but Jesus comes close to satisfying our hearts.
When we realize this, we can move past the “if”.
Jesus invites us to “come and drink”.
Jesus wants us to recognize his presence and to draw near to him. He wants us to drink deeply and quench our thirst with his great love. He doesn’t want our lives to be filled with arduous self-effort, he wants our lives to be filled with him. When this is true, we can live lives of overflow.
Do you know you’re thirsty?
Come to Jesus and drink.
Drink of his nearness and his love. Rest in what he has done for you and yield to his Holy Spirit in you. When we recognize our tremendous need for him and depend upon him for our every word and deed, he will teach us to love others as he’s loved us.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, I’ve not always been thirsty for you. I’ve chased after worldly dreams and pleasures thinking they would satisfy me. But each empty pursuit only makes the longing grow. I know now that I’ve been thirsty for you all my life. Teach me how to drink deeply of your love. I want my life to be a life of overflow. Please flow from my life like Rivers of Living Water, that all who are in my path will be blessed and loved by you. Amen.
 Ecclesiastes 3:11