Get Thirsty

Oh, to be like You,
Give all I have just to know You
Jesus, there’s no one beside You
Forever the hope in my heart
(Scandal of Grace, Hillsong United)

My neighbors just endured an on-repeat, off-key, sing-at-the-top-of-my-lungs rendition as these words inched toward my heart. Because some days you have to help yourself get thirsty. You have to tell your downcast soul, “Put your hope in God”.

Our line of work has an all too common danger. Our service and labors, hard-won knowledge, treasured relationships, language ability, cultural savvy, fruitful endeavors, carefully carved out comforts, self-sufficiency, reputation and identity – all threaten to set themselves up as a rival of our Beloved and occupy our heart’s affection.

“…those very gifts of God become a potential source of ruin to the soul…the roots of our hearts have grown deep down into things, and we dare not pull up one rootlet lest we die. Things have become necessary to us…” (AW Tozer, The Pursuit of God)

We become attached to lesser affections, and our soul wanders into the barren places, dry and dusty. As we follow their siren call, our once subtle heart cracks and splinters.

Whether numbed by pain, lulled into contentment, or enamored by our adorable charming self, our soul’s thirst wanes. If we are not careful, we not only abandon the spring of Living Water, but we dig broken cisterns in the desert that cannot hold water. (Jeremiah 2)

So, you have to help yourself get thirsty for the true Living Water. This is what you do.

You drag your heavy/fragile/cold/broken/divided/apathetic/weary/fractured/scared heart to the cross and wait. You abandon your other loves and wait for Him. You stay and you wait. You unwrap the bandages and show Him your wounds. You empty out your sorrow. You cry out for the water from the sanctuary to quench the thirst of your soul. AND DON’T YOU LEAVE AND SATISFY IT WITH ANYTHING ELSE.

When it’s dry and wild in the dark uncertainty, open wide your parched throat and wait for Living Water.

This wandering in the dry dusty barrenness teaches us to pant for the wellspring of life. We surrender the boundaries and definitions of all our attachments and affections to Jesus.

Thirsty souls long for truths that satisfied souls ignore. Parched throats yearn for the refreshment of Living Water. Panting souls surrender to the beautiful ache drawing them to the fountain of life.

We learn the song of the “faint with love” heart, “When I found the One my heart loves, I held Him and would not let Him go.”

THIS is what you were born for. THIS is what you are called to.

Oh, to be like You,
Give all I have just to know You
Jesus, there’s no one beside You
Forever the hope in my heart

“I will make rivers flow on barren heights, and springs within the valleys. I will turn the desert into pools of water, and the parched ground into springs.” (Isaiah 41:18)

What helps you get thirsty for Living Water?

What does thirsty look like for you?

11 Comments

  1. Elizabeth January 13, 2016

    Another great one for this week’s theme, Patty!!

    This post reminds me of Laura Hackett Park’s song “You satisfy my soul” whose constant refrain is “you satisfy my soul, you satisfy my soul, you satisfy my soul with your love.” And then in one of the bridges she sings “you gotta sing your way into the truth” over and over again, which reminded me of your top-of-the-lungs singing. 🙂

    This part: “AND DON’T YOU LEAVE AND SATISFY IT WITH ANYTHING ELSE.” It was all too easy to numb my longings with other things in the States these last few months. Messy relationships? Just stay up late and watch some Netflix. Especially when I didn’t have my own physical space to be able to steal away to. Now I’m back and convicted not to do that anymore!! I’ll be dragging my “heavy/fragile/cold/broken/divided/apathetic/weary/fractured/scared heart to the cross” and waiting. Every day, for as long as I can see into the future.

    Thank you for these words. We all need them.

     

    1. Patty Stallings January 13, 2016

      Hi Elizabeth!  I just went to itunes to check out the song you mentioned. Beautiful – thanks for recommending it. 

      Here’s a little secret – my admonition to not leave and satisfy the longing with anything else is my message to ME.  I so want to be a pursuer of His heart with pure devotion, and I’m too easily distracted and numbed by those lesser affections.  One of the things I love about Him is how He comes and gets us when we wander.  He creates that beautiful ache within and then waits for us.  How good and kind He is!  And how loved we are! 

      I’m asking right now that this transition season for you is full of moments of seeing His shepherding care for you, Elizabeth!  May He surround and overwhelm you with His lovingkindness!!!

  2. M'Lynn January 13, 2016

    Thanks for this, Patty. I feel like I just witnessed a Spiritual pep-rally of sorts. I can hear jock jams blaring in the background as you say “just do it!” that’s just how it goes in my sports loving brain. haha.

    1. Patty Stallings January 13, 2016

      You made me laugh out loud, M’Lynn!  I love your sports loving brain. 

  3. Danielle Wheee January 13, 2016

    Needed this today, Patty. So, so good. This morning I read of the woman anointing Jesus feet. Her act of extravagant devotion and affection was more important to him  than the service she could have done instead with that perfume money.

    So true that our service to him can occupy our heart’s affection. My favorite line: “Panting souls surrender to the beautiful ache drawing them to the fountain of life.”

    1. Patty Stallings January 13, 2016

      Hey Danielle Wheee! [I am picturing a little girls squealing “wheee” as her daddy swings her in the air. :-)]

      Your comment has me wondering what perfume in us is longing to escape to be lavished on Jesus today?  And what needs to be broken open to release it?  And where do we find the hammer to smash it?

      1. Ellie January 13, 2016

        So beautiful, love the way you unpacked it like that. “What needs to be broken open to release it?” This comment speaks to me today. Thanks.

    2. Ellie January 13, 2016

      Really helpful reminder of her loving devotion being the most important thing. Thanks Danielle.

    3. Patty Stallings January 14, 2016

      Hi Danielle Wheee! [I can almost hear a little girl squeal “wheee” in delight as her daddy swings her around in a circle! 🙂 ]

      Your comment has me wondering what perfume stored up in us longs to be lavished on Jesus today. And what needs to be broken open to release it?  And where do we find the hammer to smash it! 

  4. Grace L January 13, 2016

    Yes, I too also really needed to read today’s post. I was especially convicted of what you said:

    Our line of work has an all too common danger. Our service and labors, hard-won knowledge, treasured relationships, language ability, cultural savvy, fruitful endeavors, carefully carved out comforts, self-sufficiency, reputation and identity – all threaten to set themselves up as a rival of our Beloved and occupy our heart’s affection.

    This is so true, and helps me to see the rivals that want to take my attention away from my Beloved. Often I have felt so dry and weary, but keep working to go back to the One who can water my soul.

    With God’s help, I am going to do what you have recommended here. Your words are powerful. Thank you.

    You drag your heavy/fragile/cold/broken/divided/apathetic/weary/fractured/scared heart to the cross and wait. You abandon your other loves and wait for Him. You stay and you wait. You unwrap the bandages and show Him your wounds. You empty out your sorrow. You cry out for the water from the sanctuary to quench the thirst of your soul. AND DON’T YOU LEAVE AND SATISFY IT WITH ANYTHING ELSE.

     

    1. Patty Stallings January 13, 2016

      Grace, may your thirst be quenched as He gives you a drink from His river of delights today!  (Psalm 36:8-9)

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