Recently, I was struck by a verse in the New Testament.
In John 4, we read about the Samaritan woman who Christ speaks to at the well. As He speaks to her, He teaches her who He is, acknowledges that she is an adulterous woman, and invites her to drink the water that He has to give. Water that if men drink, they will never thirst again.
I LOVE the analogy of a spiritual thirst and a spiritual quenching. I see that thirst in the world today. I sometimes feel that thirst in myself.
We find ourselves scrolling through Facebook looking for a quick drink, but our spiritual yearning cannot be quenched by superfluous 'likes' on Facebook.
Do we feel our spiritual thirst quenched as we feast upon the scriptures each day? Do we drink deeply the water He has to give?
My own daily devotional has become more sweet since I have taken it off my daily 'To Do' list and moved it to my list of favorite treats. I imagine that as I read or study, I am drinking the hot chocolate of God's word. I feel eternal truths warming my soul and filling me with God's love. Somehow, my scripture time had morphed into the same category as my dreaded morning exercise. I've made a deliberate effort to think of scripture reading as sneaking dessert. And, I feel filled with His grace and His power as I feast.
In my opinion, we place too much emphasis on works and not enough emphasis on grace. Works are good, but Grace is everything. He is ready and waiting to pour His light and His grace upon us. Milk without money.
The lesson above is why I turned to this story in the New Testament, but it isn't what struck me about the verses I read. Let me share them with you...
6 Now Jacob’s well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied with his journey, sat thus on the well: and it was about the sixth hour.
7 There cometh a woman of Samaria to draw water: Jesus saith unto her, Give me to drink. (New Testament, John, John 4)
JESUS, therefore, BEING WEARIED WITH HIS JOURNEY...
Jesus was weary.
Jesus sat at the well while his disciples looked for meat.
Jesus asked the Samaritan woman to give him a drink.
Sometimes I feel weary and in my weariness I wonder what I am doing wrong. Sometimes I hear young mothers or mothers of many, feel that they need medication or wonder if they are depressed because they are weary.
Can I tell you something? I believe it is absolutely Christlike to feel tired, concerned, and weary. When we love others, when we serve others, when we heal others, and especially as we physically create life, the 'virtue goes out of us'. Our physical bodies get tired when we serve! That is a mortal limitation that teaches us to rest and prioritize. Weariness is good.
I promise you two things.
First, a selfish life is not as weary, and not as fulfilling as a life of service. If you spend your days seeking entertainment while trying to 'find' yourself, you may find comfort but you will always be thirsty. Selfish comfort is not soul quenching.
Second, selfless service is exhausting but satisfying. Christ promises that as we loose ourselves we will find ourselves.
Christ rested, He was weary, He was thirsty, He asked His sister for help. Even as He was offering eternal water to the Samaritan woman, HE WAS THIRSTY. He was weary. He took time to rest at the well and because He was resting, He had time to teach.
Spiritual thirst is different from physical thirst.
Where are you on your journey?
Pay attention to what you are needing.
Sometimes my body is rested but my mind and my soul are racing and hungry. The drink I need is spiritual. I find this peace as I read the word of God, as I pray, as I repent, as I set new goals, as I share my testimony with others, as I hear the testimony of others, or as I attend the temple.
Sometimes my physical body is weary. I find rest as I eat healthy food, drink water, take a nap, and take some quiet time to recharge my nervous system. Pure, unified, physical intimacy is one of the best ways I have found to help reset my racing emotions.
President Monson has said,
"To all who so despair, may I offer the assurance found in the psalm “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.” 8
I believe in Christ.
I feel His power to cleanse and fortify in my life daily.
I know He is near me as I draw water from the well for my family.
14 But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.
15 The woman saith unto him, Sir, give me this water, that I thirst not, neither come hither to draw. (New Testament, John, John 4)
Give me this water, that I thirst not!
Give me this body, that I can learn from thirst.
Give me this day, that I may draw water from this well to "Give [him] to drink."
Being weary is Christlike.
I have felt His power the strongest on days and even months when I was the most weary.
Our physical bodies can thirst even as our spirits are immersed in His power.
I know it and today I am grateful for that knowledge.