Mat’s July Letter

Water is chemically amazing, and it is the stuff of life. In John 4Open Link in New Window Jesus meets a woman drawing water at a well. He says to her, “those who drink of the water that I give them will never be thirsty. The water that I give will become in them a spring of water gushing up to eternal life.”(v14)

Jesus uses the image of water for the Holy Spirit on a few occasions. I wonder if our experience of Jesus and the Holy Spirit is like ‘a spring gushing up to eternal life’? Interestingly when the woman asks for this water Jesus responds by asking about her husband. Bizarre! What is Jesus getting at here?

Next March we are going on a church weekend at Lee Abbey. I and my family lived there before coming to Bristol. You may know it. What you might not know is that Lee Abbey has its own water supply from a spring on the hillside above it. There is a story that, a few years ago the water was not flowing properly from the hillside. There was not a drought. The estate team went to have a look. Was the spring drying up? When they examined the spring they discovered that plants had grown over the entrance, rocks had fallen in and so the water was not flowing. They cleared it, problem solved.

As I journey with God I come across areas of my life where I need healing, or areas where I need to make some lifestyle changes in order to follow Jesus more closely. Sometimes the Holy Spirit will convict me of habits or attitudes that I wasn’t aware of. Sometimes things become obvious through the ‘loving challenge’ of others or of scripture. Are these the rocks and plants that can block the gushing water of the Spirit? This is my ungodliness preventing me from receiving rather than God not giving. The water is still in the well it’s just that I’m not receiving it. As we grow in love for God through following Jesus, through prayer, scripture, service and the love of our community, God in his immense love and grace gives us the will and strength to remove the blocks. We just need to listen, receive and be obedient. Sometimes we may need to seek the help and prayers of our brothers and sisters.

The woman replies to Jesus, “give me this water, so that I may never be thirsty.” God gives in abundance, often we need to learn how to receive that gushing abundance.

In this bulletin there is information about a Wholeness Course in the Autumn. I commend it to you.

Mat

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