John 7:37-38 – On the last and greatest day of the Feast, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, "If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him."
As I read the devotion for today, I could not help but think of Josiah’s obedience. He was so active in identifying problems and taking proactive steps to address what was wrong. At New Hope, we have a phrase that says “Hungry? Feed yourself.” I believe this reflects the Josiah approach to solving problems. Josiah did not make excuses for what he identified as unrighteous living. He did not blame other people for the problem. Instead, he took personal responsibility and acted in order to ensure the nation was living righteously. We all know that our weekly services are not enough to sustain our spirit and thus “Hungry? Feed yourself” has been instrumental in our growth and sustainment. But, while we know that no King was more obedient then Josiah, his impulsive behavior got the better of him when he decided to act without seeking counsel of the Lord. Josiah attempted to feed himself and his people by not allowing the Egyptians to pass through the land. Today, maybe the right thing is not always to do something to feed our hunger but instead do what Christ suggests and drink from the living water. This appears to be the difference between living under the old covenant compared to the new. The old covenant was based on obedience to the law. The new covenant and our spiritual fitness are based on the Lord’s grace. So, another way for us to address our spiritual fitness is “Thirsty? Drink the living water in Christ Jesus.”
As I continue to grow in my personal walk with the Lord, I realize that it’s not always doing something to fix the problem but more importantly understanding how Jesus would deal with the issue first. Often times when I stop to drink the living water as Jesus suggested, I discover that my ways are not always his ways. Like Josiah, it is not always necessary to do something. Sometimes it’s better to seek to understand first and then look to be understood.
Dear Lord Jesus, I am thirsty! I come to you to drink the living water. I know that your ways are better than mine. Your outcomes are higher than mine and what is required of me is my unadulterated faith in you and my willingness to accept your ways as my own. Lord, give me wisdom to apply what I have learned and the diligence to sustain myself in all I do through you. Lord, continue to discipline me gently when I go astray and forgive me of my sins. In your Holy name I pray AMEN.