“I will provide water in the wilderness and rivers in the barren desert, where my chosen people may drink”.
Isa 43:20 NEB
Water is scarce in some parts of the world. Many parts of Africa have very little. Egypt is one huge desert with the Nile running the whole length of the land. Cultivation takes place for about a hundred metres either side of the river. Then it is desert as far as the eye can see. Iraq is watered by two big rivers, the Tigris and the Euphrates, which form fertile valleys.
Without the modern systems of damming and drainage, people in the Bible often expressed the need for water. The lack of it was often a factor in the many sieges that took place. The dream of the people was always for plentiful water and God in his mercy and love was the great provider. When the earlier Israelites were wandering in the desert under Moses they needed water. At God’s command Moses struck a rock and water flowed. It was a miracle and a sure sign of God’s protection and guidance. At Jacob’s well, Jesus stopped and offered living water to the woman who went to fetch water for her home. The living water he offered was what we would call spiritual life. On the cross, he called out, “I thirst”.
Plenty of people in undeveloped parts of the world have to carry water from streams and rivers to their homes. Sometimes what they bring is polluted. It is an important component of communal and political life that these people should be provided with potable water and it is every Christian believer’s duty to support whatever moves are needed to bring this about.
Lord, thank you for the water I have. Give me also living water.