By His Grace: All who thirst after Christ, come!
“On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.”
What does it mean to be thirsty?
As my family and I enjoyed an afternoon of ball at a nearby park, my youngest granddaughter reached up to retrieve her sippy cup of juice. I held the cup to steady her hands and was given a facial expression that was priceless. The sounds coming from each gulp relayed her feeling of satisfaction and comfort. As she turned her beautiful brown eyes toward her "Nanna" for more, there was trust and assurance in them that her thirst would be quenched.
How much more should you and I thirst this way for our soon coming king, Jesus?
Let’s take a closer look together at how all that has been shared applies to you and me.
The intensity of life's pressures
OK, life is not easy, and who said it would be? In fact, since the fall of Adam, challenges for mankind have intensified greatly, especially now. It seems as if the world has gone stark mad. The enemy is trying to distract us from truth found in the word of God, while deceiving many to live life on their own terms absent of Christ. If we're not careful, a drought of great proportion will overtake us and leave us emotionally and spiritually destitute.
Did you walk away from God because the pressure of it all has been overwhelming? If the answer is no, great! Remain encouraged in the Lord and in the race.
And if yes, get back in the race. You are almost at the finish line and do not even know it. The reward for your submission and obedience is eternal life in heaven.
"But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well."
As we continue to seek the Lord and to do his will, the stakes are higher. Adversity from all sides will dog you. Do not give up. There is no time for blaming. The only one who can stand in your way from enjoying this life and the one to come is you. Jesus is your game changer. Allow thirst for knowledge and truth to become the driving force to a closer relationship with him.
"You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. So don't try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work, so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way. If you don't know what you're doing, pray to the Father. He loves to help. You'll get his help and won't be condescended to when you ask for it."
Childlike faith gets the attention
As my granddaughter trusted me to help her find relief through a cool drink, with the faith of child were we not instructed to trust Christ?
"He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. And he said: "Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven."
Our need of Christ and in every area of life should be like that of taking our next breath; we cannot live without Him.
Society teaches happiness is self-made and that a relationship with Christ is no longer necessary. Not true. All things good come to those who receive him as Lord.
"But to all who did receive Him, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God."
But what happens if you never held a relationship with Jesus or perhaps you once believed and turned away (for whatever reason)?
Humbly approach Him in respect and with repentance and invite Him into your life. He will receive you as his own. Jesus is not in heaven keeping score of all our mess-ups. He came to give His life for us so we can have eternal life with him and not be left behind.
"Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died — more than that, who was raised to life — is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us."
Remember you are precious to God, and He loves you very much. How you begin to receive this amazing and unconditional love is by your own free will, you accept Christ as Lord and Savior.
For it is written, "Jesus answered, 'Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.’"
Drink from the well of eternal life. Do not allow this moment to pass; tomorrow is not promised.
For those who desire a relationship with the Lord, or would like to renew it, allow me to extend an invitation to experience His unconditional love for you. By your own free will you accept Christ as Lord and Savior. Do not allow this moment to pass; tomorrow is not promised. But what is promised is that Jesus is coming soon.
When you declare with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. This has nothing to do with religion and all to do with a relationship. It is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.
Please repeat this prayer: "Lord, Jesus, forgive me of my sins I committed against you. I believe Jesus died for my sins and has risen again. Please come into my life and heart and lead the way. I confess you as my Lord and Savior from this day forward. In Jesus' name, amen."
Welcome into the family of Christ.
May the Lord keep you and bless you continuously. Shalom, go in peace.
Bible references: John 7:37-38; Matthew 6:33; James 1:3-5; Matthew 18:2-4; John 1:12; Romans 8:34; John 4:13 NIV. To obtain the full benefits of each verse, please read the five verses before and after each verse.
-- Edith Nevis can be reached at 857-2200 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.