"I am Thirsty"
John 19:28 ¶ After this, when Jesus knew that all was now finished, he said (in order to fulfill the scripture), “I am thirsty.”
Psa. 22:15 my mouth is dried up like a potsherd,
and my tongue sticks to my jaws;
you lay me in the dust of death.
Psa. 69:21 They gave me poison for food,
and for my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.
Jesus had over and over again spoken about the living water that was available to his followers. The woman at the well wanted to know about the water so that she would never have to come out and draw again in the middle of the day. Jesus had spent his ministry pointing people in the direction of the living and eternal water that would quench the thirst of their souls. The significance of this moment for Jesus on the cross is that now Jesus is the one who is thirsty. The one who is the source of eternal waters of satisfaction, is thirsty! Could it be that at this very moment, as he takes upon himself the sin of the world that we truly understand his statement, "My God, My God why have you forsaken me" in this comment about thirst! The sin of the world separates the Father from the Son and in that moment the source of life-giving water can no longer flow -- and Jesus, the one who never thirsts -- is thirsty.
In this moment on the cross Jesus reveals to us the utter lostness of separation from God. It is a not-too-subtle reminder to each and every single one of us of what can happen when we step away from God -- there is a separation that leads to an incredible thirst that cannot be quenched by the world.
I live in Ohio where we have not had much of a summer. It's been moderately warm but not really all too hot and I've not experienced being very thirsty. But then, last week I traveled to Idaho where every day the desert earth was baked by the hot summer sun. Little did I realize how much more I needed to be drinking in that environment. At the end of the day I found myself light-headed and my mouth dry -- for I had not taken the time to drink all the fluids necessary to do well in that environment.
Some of us are walking in a desert spiritually -- and we are dry and lightheaded. We can no longer make good decisions and, at times we are headed in the wrong direction. If Jesus himself was thirsty on that cross -- why do we think that we can survive without being connected to the source on a daily basis? The Holy Spirit is the source provided for you and for me, and we are invited to regularly drink deep and long from that well so that we are sustained in the midst of the difficulties of life.
Jesus experienced separation from the Father and in that moment he was thirsty. The human solutions for Jesus on the cross did not satisfy -- and neither will human solutions provide for our satisfaction. If we are truly thirsty there is only one place to go -- sit and soak in God's holy presence! May God quench our thirst today.
Lord, I am thirsty for more of you. Amen.