When we read the story of the woman at the well, there are so many different beautiful points we can pull from this story. But we are going to focus on one that we often hit and then jump off of really quickly. Why? I’m not sure why we jump off of it so quickly. Maybe it’s because sometimes we have a difficult time understanding it ourselves or maybe it’s because it makes us uncomfortable to question whether or not we are filling our heart with what is true. Whatever it is, Jesus makes a powerful statement and it’s ones we need to not jump over but to rejoice in completely so we can let the living water flow!
“Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”
– Jesus, John 4:13-14
What is the Living Water?
Have you seen this month’s Family Time Training Activity? My son called it “epic!” Why? Because in a fun way it helped explain what Jesus meant by “living water.”
Much like the woman at the well, we may initially question, “Where can I get this living water?” “What is it?”
In chapter 4 of John, Jesus uses the term living water to signify eternal life and then a few chapters later, Jesus goes on to describe living water as the Holy Spirit. These two things are intertwined. Those who accept the Holy Spirit and the eternal life Jesus offers will have this living water flowing within them!
On the last and greatest day of the Feast, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him.” By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were later to receive. Up to that time the Spirit had not been given, since Jesus had not yet been glorified.
– John 7:37-39
Teaching this lesson to our kids
From the moment we are born we are crying out. We have needs. At some point we start recognizing that we have an emptiness in our hearts that needs filling. Some call it a God sized hole. Whatever we call it, the truth is God put it there so we would search for Him. Of course, because he is our maker and creator, we long to know him whether we realize this or not. Filling this God sized hole with anything other than him will leave us with an empty feeling still.
Emptiness in our Hearts
The kids discussed what some might fill their hearts with and so we filled up one jar with items representing with these things:
- Video Games
- Feeling Important
Looking into the jar, it became obvious that even if we tried to cram all these items in there as tight as we could, empty spaces were still present.
Filling our Hearts with Christ
On the other hand, when we fill our lives with Christ’s living water, there is no empty space any where in our hearts. Our hearts are completely filled up! Praise the Lord for filling our God sized hole with His eternal hope and Holy Spirit!
This idea was represented by a second jar with an akla-seltzer tablet in the bottom then filled with water. Our kids were fascinated with this visual of “living water.” We let them each add a tablet to the water jar individually and then allowed them to add a tablet all at the same time. Adding 4 tablets to the water jar at once, caused the water to overflow onto the porch and then run down onto the stone patio. It was a great example of water welling up and flowing from the heart! (Get this full Living Water Activity and script here or check out there current month’s free activity, if you missed this one.)
Prayer Over Our Hearts
Oh, Lord, how amazing you are! Not only have you gifted us an amazing relationship with you, the Creator of the Universe, but you have gifted us a living water so we will never be spiritually thirsty! Praise you, Lord, for all your blessings. Let us never trade this fullness we have in Christ for physical things that only lead to emptiness. When we are allowing you to fill our hearts, you truly create a hope and living water that spills over our hearts and refreshes others in the process. Help us through your Holy Spirit to whet the thirst of others when they come in contact with us, so that we can point them to you and they can have their thirst satisfied as well. We pray this especially for our children! May they see Christ’s living water in us and want their thirst to be quenched too! In the One who is the Messiah, our Savior – Amen!