So how many of us know what it means to be thirsty, not the “I just ate a bag of chips and now I’m thirsty” but the real thing? I’m willing to guess that not a lot of us have experience actual, real thirst.
There aren’t all that many things that we require for life but water is one of them. Thirst is what alerts us to our need for water, tells us that we are dehydrated. How we respond to thirst can tell us a lot about ourselves, the liquid to which we turn to relieve thirst can be anything from water to energy drinks to liquor to . . . . But what if we turn to something other than a liquid? What if the next time we are thirsty we eat a piece of bread instead? Or go for a walk? Or take a nap? There is nothing wrong with any of those things in and of themselves but when it comes to satisfying thirst, they aren’t very good.
Thirst is an excellent metaphor for needing or deeply desiring anything. To what do we turn when we have a spiritual thirst? Do we try to slake our thirst with a new book? A seminar? A podcast? Nothing wrong with these things either but if what we need is to engage with Jesus then those things aren’t very good. It seems to me that for many of us, we turn to all sorts of things to deal with our spiritual thirst but it is only when we finally get to Jesus that we are actually satisfied. Maybe the next time that kind of thirst shows up we can try to begin with Jesus, it might save us a lot of time; and really, no one looks good with their tongue hanging out.
Knox Presbyterian Thirst
St. Mark’s Presbyterian Thirst
I hope you enjoy one or both of these sermons. Let me know as you wish in the comments. I always enjoy a dialogue.