I have relatives with some property and a cabin in a very remote area. One of the challenges there was to provide some form of running water for our use. Years ago, I helped them set up a system using a tank at the top of a rocky hill formation, which gathers water from a nearby lake. We set up hoses running to various faucets. Any time you open a faucet, water runs down the hill, and out it pours. You can imagine how gratifying it is to open the faucet and get water.
But first, you’ve got to fill the tank! And consider how significant that part is. Compared to opening the faucet, filling the tank is almost all of the work.
This has been a helpful illustration for me as I endeavor to experience well-being in my life and hope others experience it in their lives, too. I thought about how the tank could symbolize our consciousness and how the water could symbolize the awareness of God’s good nature and all-presence. God, or the Holy Spirit, constitutes the very essence of our lives. And it so often seems that the momentum I would like to experience depends on gaining awareness of His presence. If we want progress or more well-being, we need to continue filling our spiritual tank so that when we open the faucet, the good in our consciousness is expressed and put forth into our world.
The Bible speaks of this in terms of “living water.” In the Gospel of John, we read: “Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive” (7:37-39). The divine Spirit, which the master Christian fully expressed, has all the living water that one could need. And this living water can be brought forth in the form of divine qualities such as holiness, honesty, and love. It brings us more in tune with divine living, replacing fear, stagnation, materialism, and disease.
Mary Baker Eddy wrote of finding and feeling the divine Spirit: “Whatever inspires with wisdom, Truth, or Love – be it song, sermon, or Science – blesses the human family with crumbs of comfort from Christ’s table, feeding the hungry and giving living waters to the thirsty” (“Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” p. 234). I’ve certainly had times when I was thirsty for a better day or a better year. My family has had chapters in life when we felt something was missing, or weekends where people were not getting along. Often this has required us to discover more fully that life is defined and ordered by an infinite, living God.
For me, this spiritual work means time for daily prayer. Similarly, during weekends, our family tries to incorporate a “quiet time.” And as that quotation suggests, we’ve found that some hymn singing, a church service, and inspirational reading, are all helpful in finding together the living waters that move us along.
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