Any gardener will tell you that watering a garden is the most important activity for a thriving garden. The more you water, the better the garden looks.  Someone once said that “God makes rainy days so that gardeners can get the housework done.”  Water is essential to a garden and in many ways determines the very life of a garden.  When there is a shortage of water, soil and plants dry out, soon everything withers and dies at a rapid rate.  What took months to nurture and care for can die in the space of a day.

Sometimes our lives feel dry, “sun-scorched.”  We South Africans know what it means to be desperate for rain, to know that longing to see the thunder clouds growing on the horizon.  Our lives can have that same desperation: when we feel dry and without strength.  I love the promise in Isaiah 58:11 (NLT)

“The Lord will guide you continually, giving you water when you are dry and restoring your strength. You will be like a well-watered garden, like an ever-flowing spring.”

What a promise of refreshing, revitalising, renewing and replenishing. 

Because of the Lords guidance and provision in our lives we will be described as a well-watered garden, always having our strength restored so that we never have to worry about drought, or scarcity.

In John 4:1-26, is the story of Jesus and his disciples travelling through the land of Samaria, they meet a Samaritan woman at a well. Jesus, talking to the woman says:

Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.  

This is it, no matter how dry, sun scorched or desolate life may be, Jesus promises that His people, those who trust in Him, will have a life-giving spring of living water IN them, which will ensure that their gardens are always fruitful and productive.  They will experience life, and life more abundantly!

No matter what the situation, no matter how sun scorched, dry, dusty, hard, difficult and life threatening it may be, you and I have a never-ending supply of fresh life-giving water that Jesus provides for us.  We need not fear famine or drought; this living water never runs dry.  It’s available to you and me 24/7 and it will refresh, revitalise, renew, replenish and produce a fruitful harvest in us.  Jesus leads us to the spring.

For the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd; “he will lead them to springs of living water.” “And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.”’ (Rev 7:17)

Our responsibility is to drink deep.  This water is freely available to us without cost.  We just need to come into the presence of God and drink deep because we have this living water placed inside of us.

The Spirit and the bride say, ‘Come!’ And let the one who hears say, ‘Come!’ Let the one who is thirsty come; and let the one who wishes take the free gift of the water of life. (Rev 22:17)

“Now on the last day, the great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. “He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.'” (John 7:37-38)

“but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall never thirst; but the water that I will give him will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life.” (John 4:14)

No matter how much energy, resourcefulness or talent we have, sooner or later we discover that the well of our personal resources is running dry. But when Christ, the source of living water, indwells our lives, we aren’t trapped in that situation of having to draw from our limited abilities and resources.  Jesus becomes our unfailing source of spiritual renewal. We find that when we have nothing left, He is the well that never runs dry.

And in Jeremiah 17 v 7-8 the righteous man “… is like a tree planted by water that sends out its roots by the stream, and does not fear when heat comes, for its leaves remain green, and is not anxious in the year of drought, for it does not cease to bear fruit”

When we make sure to put the roots of our spiritual life, deep into the living water, then we will not fear when heat comes (trouble and difficult times), our leaves will remain green (always productive) and we will never be anxious in the year of drought.  We will always be a people that bear fruit and glorify the Lord.

Reflection Questions:

  1. Do you ever feel dry or sun-scorched? One often feels tired, discouraged, without hope and probably fearful. It usually happens when we have been through a difficult time, or are working through a challenge that is taking all our energy. In what situations do you feel like this?  hat is your strategy when you are feeling like this?
  2. If Jesus has put a spring of living water inside of us that will refresh, revive, renew and replenish us – is there any need to go around feeling dry, listless, sun-scorched and without hope? To what extent do you tolerate this feeling when Jesus is ready to supply your thirst?  Would you say that you make it a habit to go to Jesus?
  3. David often felt like this, we see it in Psalm61:1-3; Psalm 63:1; Psalm 42:1-3,5; Psalm 22:14-15; with more if you look for them.  David’s first port of call when he felt like this was the Lord, David knew that God would sustain him (Psalm 3:3-6).  When David fled from Absalom (See 2 Sam 16:14) he arrived at his destination and then scripture says, he “refreshed” himself.  How do you think David did this?
  4. Whose responsibility is it to come?  Whose responsibility is it to refresh us?  Looking at Psalm 23, do you see the role of the Shepherd in providing for us and giving water to drink?
  5. What would it look like for you to put your roots deep into a stream of living water?  What difference would it make to the day to day experience of your life?  Be sure to read the links below.

Thank you, Jesus, that You provide us with a spring of living water in our lives, one that is always inside of us for all eternity.  Thank you that the Holy Spirit is in us and helps us, teaches us and guides us in how to grow roots deep into that living water, the resource that never runs dry and enables us to go on, no matter what our circumstances because our hope and faith and love is in Jesus.  Help me to grow my roots deep into the stream of living water, so that my life and spiritual garden will be well established.

Next: Weeding Your Spiritual Garden

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Becoming a Tree Woman

A Large Rooted Woman