Living Water

Come to the living water

Bathe in the blessēd stream

Come to the water

Christ redeemed

I love the North Gower estuary. Wildlife wild. Low-tide, mist rising in the sun. High-tide, waves lapping the wall at Penclawdd. I love to run the marsh road when it is really a river, salt fresh, ebb and flow, flow and ebb.

This morning, early, I stood on the bank at Penclawdd and let the water wash my feet, still sandaled defiantly against the inevitable coming of winter, and gazed in awe as sea met river just a yard or two out. I watched as everything that came into that place, wood, seaweed and sundry estuary debris, dragged down in the cross-current. No being alive could hope to survive if caught there between river and sea.

Life, graced us and held out before us by God, is spoken of in the Bible in terms of ‘living water’. Jesus tells a Samaritan woman at the well of Jacob that, if she asked him, he would give her living water. The invitation is extended to ‘all who thirst’ (Jn 7.37). The book of Revelation describes ‘the river of the water of life’, flowing from the ‘throne of God and of the Lamb’ through the centre of the ‘new Jerusalem’ (Rev 22).

Too much of history, too great a part of our lives, have been and still are spent going against the flow of the river of life. Be it Western democracy, New Russian capitalism, Chinese colonization of Africa or any of the empire-building regimes of the past, the political aspirations of men and women invariably tide against the river of life. So too our efforts to control our own lives and those of others. This flowing against, simply drags us down.

It’s only a matter of a few minutes now. The tide will turn and the sea will fade back. The river will flow free once more. The empires people build, big or small, they all fade. The river of the water of life? Well she just keeps on flowing. She will never stop…

Come to the living water…Bathe in the blessēd stream…

~ by Fr Tim Ardouin on October 11, 2013.

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