In the first verse of Isaiah 55 in the Old Testament, we read this Divine Invitation:
"Come all you who are thirsty,
come to the waters....."
This "invitation" and proposal delivered through the Prophet Isaiah is couched in terms of a Covenant Promise:
"Listen, listen to me, and eat what is
and your soul will delight in the
richest of fare.
Give ear and come to me;
hear me, that your soul may live.
I will make an everlasting covenant
my faithful love promised to David."
--Isaiah 55: 2,3
In the New Testament, when Christ met the Samaritan woman at the well in the town of Sychar (John 4: 4-26), we are told that Jesus knew everything about her. He knew her past, He knew her struggles, her wounds, her heartaches, her pain and her sins. He also knew that the water from this particular man-made well could at best only quench her bodily thirst, and could do so only temporarily.
> Jesus told this woman...(just as He tells us)....that if we have thirsty hearts and souls and ears to hear, and if we would but ask, He would provide "Living Water", the kind of water that restores the soul and revives the spirit for all Eternity, the kind of water that issues forth from the Wellspring of Life itself. In essence, Christ freely offers himself to us daily...here and now...an undeserved blessing, a precious, life-restoring gift.
Jesus later told his disciples that He could not only lead them to the Living Water, He went a step further. He claimed that He was and IS the Living Water. (John 7: 37-39)
Recently, I have begun taking photographs on the shorelines of lakes and ponds near my home in Georgia. Sometimes I feel as if this Christ, the Good Shepherd, has been leading me beside these still waters to teach me a lesson and to help restore my soul. And like the desperately needy woman at the well, I am discovering, I think, that this Jesus....God's perfect sacrificial offering for us...is in the business of changing "everyday" water into Living Water and then (as He did at Cana), that Living Water into wine. And in so doing, He is issuing to us an invitation, an invitation to a future joyful wedding feast, an intimate banquet of such delight that we can scarcely begin to imagine it.
I am convinced that as creatures made in the image of God, we live here in the Present like leaves floating on the surface of the waters of Time between the past and the joyful anticipation of what lies ahead in the future. And that beyond this present reality, we are being invited and called Heavenward to a Covenant Promise...a covenant not unlike a sacred wedding vow/proposal graciously extended to us from the Author of Life itself. It is an invitation that I believe we ought to consider sincerely, and ought... by Faith... ultimately to accept.
Father, I pray that as we reflect upon your Word, that somehow You may begin drawing us closer to yourself so that we may begin to see You wrapped in your creation and then to detect and taste the blessed and miraculous Covenant Wine being offered here and now.....
"Help Us See Beyond the Surface"
(Of This Broken World We're In)
Help us plumb the depths of Truth, Lord...
Give us Grace to see the Light.
Help us now to trust your Promise,
When surrounded by the night.
And by pray'r and supplication,
May surrender be our aim...
Lift our eyes, Lord, to your Heavens
Where with You one day we'll reign.
Help us see beyond the surface
Of this broken world we're in;
Teach us, Lord, of Love's forgiveness
So we may be born again.
Give us hearts like Nicodemus....
Hearts that seek You in the night;
And with him there find communion...
Blessed Hope, be our delight.
Give us Grace to hear You whisper,
Give our hearts the eyes to see...
May our gaze detect your Glory;
Help us taste Eternity.
Give us, Lord, the Living Water
Like the woman at the well;
Help us taste the wine of Cana;
Lord, cast out each living hell.
Change our hearts! Please help us turn, Lord...
Help us leave the past behind;
Heal the wounds that may ensnare us...
Father, give us Jesus' Mind.
If the past below still haunts us...
Bitter mem'ries...cast aside.
Heaven help us change our focus,
And in You, Lord, to abide.
May each pain beneath the surface,
Lord, flow through The Way of Grace.
May we fathom your sweet Mercies....
And above, Lord, seek your Face.
"Those who do not meet him [God] clothed in his gift of Salvation and Grace must meet him naked without a wedding garment. For all must meet him, since he is Truth, and Truth is universal and unavoidable. Mercy is Truth clothed; judgment is Truth naked."
– Peter Kreeft
For our Lord God Almighty
Let us rejoice and be glad
and give him glory!
For the wedding of the Lamb
and his bride has made herself
Fine linen, bright and clean,
was given her to wear."
(Revelation 19: 6-8)