Fountains

Sunday Evening

John 4

File:Yonge-Dundas-Urbeach-christina-at-waterplay.jpg

Yonge-Dundas Square Urban beach, evening waterplay,
Copyright (c) 2004, Steve Mann.

14“Those who drink of the water that I will give them will never be thirsty. The water that I will give will become in them a spring of water gushing up to eternal life.”

We have a fascination with fountains.  I have no real interest in going to Las Vegas but, if I had the chance, I’d like to see that fountain I’ve seen in movies.  The waterfalls at Yosemite capture the attention, especially when they are full in the spring.  Fountains call to children and adults alike to “come and play” – though usually it is only children who answer that invitation.  Even a simple lawn sprinkler is a source of joy and delight.  And those of us with urban experience know the neighborhood transforming power of having the fire department come open the fire hydrant.

We linger at fountains.  They are joy and laughter.  They instill peace and reflection.  They spawn wishes and kisses. There is something entrancing in the splashing water, its cool clarity, the dancing play of water and light.  A fountain provides a wonderful image for the life of the spirit that has found its peace in God.

14“Those who drink of the water that I will give them will never be thirsty. The water that I will give will become in them a spring of water gushing up to eternal life.”

This does not mean, of course, that believers will never have days of trouble – or that the model of the Christian life is constant bubbliness.  It does not mean there are not days of discouragement – or afflictions of body, mind and spirit.  It means that there is a reservoir of hope, an underlying confidence, a joy founded on the encounter with perfect mercy that keeps us from becoming lost in ourselves and guides us on our path, wherever that path may lead.

We are headed towards the banquet that does not end.  We are inheritors of a life that cannot perish.  We are clothed in Christ risen from the dead.  We abide in the Word that infused all creation with light and life.  We have been met by a perfect mercy.

And whether we are big splashy fountains, or still, cool spring-fed pools, the living water born of the Spirit of God will overflow to others.  And should it fail to do so, we must attend again to the work of unblocking the fountain by drinking deeply from the living water that is Christ.

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