Wednesday, August 10, 2011

All who are thirsty...

Last week my brother and I drove to Colorado for the wedding of James and Kelsey. Driving my "trusty steed" (a Honda CR-V) named Claxton we set out confidently. It was a hundered-degree day, the sun was beating down and for some reason our A/C was not functioning properly (which is abnormal). Not gonna lie, it was highly uncomfortable! Lane and I drove 16hrs in the sweltering heat, sweating through our clothes over and over again and both getting dehydrated in spite of our frequent rest stops and consuming of various liquids (from warm water to lemonade). I'd like to take a moment and recognize one of the many ways that Lane served me on the trip and that was by driving the entire way. I was so dehydrated at points that I would suddenly fall asleep just from the exhaustion of the heat and then start awake when my body was to warm to sleep any longer. Because Lane never asked me to drive I was able to take advantage of those few times of rest.
In the midst of that great discomfort the Lord began to minister to my heart. At Ellerslie whenever something was less comfortable than what we were accustomed to we would choose to be thankful for the opportunity and would joyfully say to each other, "Missionary training!" As I pondered how most Americans would react to the discomfort of sweating for 16hrs straight but how few people have probably had to experience that very much (if at all) in their life my mind went to all the brothers and sisters we have overseas that deal with excessive heat and lack the luxuries we take for granted. The Lord helped me to see all the things that I had to be thankful for in the midst of our unbearably-warm drive.

Thankful for His provision of finances that enabled us to purchase COLD refreshments!

Thankful that there was a way to create shade!

Thankful for restaurants and gas stations that provide air-conditioned relief, running-water rest rooms, and beverages! 

Thankful that we didn't have to WALK miles and miles in the heat carrying heavy loads of sticks or jugs of water, we got to SIT and read or rest!

Thankful that we were never in such desperate need or so lacking any other option for hydration that we had to stop and collect water for drinking from rivers, streams or ponds that we passed!

Thankful that we were able to listen to music praising our good God and communicate with dear ones that were praying for strength and relief for us. The radio, iPod and cell phones we had never ceased to work!

Thankful for the setting of the sun and the finish of a very trying and testing day... Thankful that we don't have to endure that discomfort daily!

My heart and mind was on those less fortunate than myself but even more than being able to empathize (to some small degree) with those enduring dehydration, exhausting heat and long days and wanting to bring all of them the relief of clean, convenient water and rest and shade I wanted them to know the One who was sustaining me. Jesus. The One who quenches thirsty souls -- not just thirsty bodies. The One who provides supernatural rest even in the midst of strenuous toil. The One who refreshes and restores our lives for eternity not just a day. I heard the cries of those without water and those without hope, those who simply survive one day at a time and labor each day simply to live one more day. I saw the practical need, desperate need, urgent need of providing water for these people, it finally hit home with me. At the same time though, I saw their need for the knowledge that I have of a God who supplies all needs, satisfies at the deepest level and who not only provides rest and abundant life here on earth but who promises eternal rest in His presence at the end of that Day when He brings us Home to Heaven.
Christian, allow Him to move you to action. Allow Him to reach your heart and open it to what He opened mine to on that hot drive to Colorado last Monday. Pray for the thirsty souls in your sphere of influence and allow the Lord to lead you in how to bring them to the Well that will satisfy their longing souls. Pray for those dying around the world for lack of clean or convenient water and allow the Lord to lead you in the way He desires to use you to bring physical relief as well as spiritual relief to them.
Note: I'd also like to thank our brother-in-the-Lord who blessed us greatly by fixing our air conditioning and teaching Lane how to care for my "trusty steed", Claxton. Our drive home was much more comfortable! We're thankful for your services and your joyful, always-ready-to-help attitude, Aaron!

- Resources -

Gospel for Asia's Jesus Wells

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