Relationship with God

Duane Vander Klok

What do you need most in life? Is it more money, a new house, a better job, greater success? No, it is an intimate relationship with God. His presence in your daily life is the key to everything else.

You were designed to live in and enjoy the presence of the Lord every day. However, many people go through life completely unaware of God’s presence. They have been blinded and have a tendency to focus on the problems and distractions of life rather than the presence of the Lord.

Since his first appearance in the Garden of Eden, the devil has been glad to do whatever he can to lure people away from having a relationship with the Lord. In fact, John 10:10 (NIV) describes the devil as a thief who “comes only to steal and kill and destroy.” The good news is found at the end of the verse where Jesus said, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”

A Fountain of Living Water
Actually, Jesus had a lot to say about life. You may have heard about His encounter with the Samaritan woman He met at a well. This woman had spent many years looking for someone or something to satisfy her heart. On this day, she had come to the well to get a drink of water, but that is not what attracted Jesus’ attention.

Jesus recognized her deepest need and began talking with her about a different kind of water: living water. He said, “Whoever drinks of this water will thirst again, but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life” (John 4:13-14).

When the woman asked Jesus where He could get this water, He told her to go get her husband and come back. She said she had no husband, and Jesus pointed out that she had been married five times but that, indeed, the man she was currently with was not her husband. At this, she perceived He was a prophet, and Jesus revealed to her that He was the promised Messiah.

The fountain of water Jesus offered her was a relationship with God. Like the woman at the well, your deepest needs and longings cannot be filled by anyone or anything else the physical world has to offer. True fulfillment can only be found in a relationship with God, the very source of life.

Rivers of Living Water
Jesus talked about living water again in John chapter seven. There we see Jesus at the Feast of Tabernacles, a joyful celebration of Israel’s deliverance from Egypt. During each day of this festival, there was a ceremonial “pouring out” of water to remind them of how God had provided water from the rock when the children of Israel were dying of thirst in the wilderness.

As the water was being poured out on the last day of the feast, Jesus stood up and cried out, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water” (John 7:37-38). The Jews didn’t understand what Jesus meant, but the meaning was apparent to the Apostle John who continues in verse 39 saying, “But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.” The “rivers of living water” Jesus spoke of refer to the Holy Spirit.

So you see, Jesus never offered us just a little sip of water. He promised a “fountain of water that springs up” (eternal life through a relationship with Jesus Christ) and even “rivers of living water” (from the Holy Spirit). Think about this: a well can go dry, but a spring doesn’t have dry spells, and a river has a continual flow of water. God wants us to understand that we can have more and more – an unending flow – of His presence in our lives.

Satisfying Your Thirst
In Jeremiah 2:13, we read these words from God: “For My people have committed two evils: they have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters, and hewn themselves cisterns – broken cisterns that can hold no water.” God provides an abundant and constant supply of all the comfort and relief anyone could ever need, yet the people rejected Him and instead tried to provide for themselves what only He can supply.

Here is a question for you: when you have a need, where do you look first?

Many people try to satisfy their spiritual thirst with things. They think, “If only I had more money…if only I were married…if only I were more popular…if I could just lose 20 lbs….” The list goes on and on, but in each case, they are looking in the wrong place. It’s as fruitless as going to a broken cistern and expecting to find water.

Others attempt to satisfy their spiritual needs through some form of “spirituality” that doesn’t focus on having a personal relationship with God. That’s another dry, unproductive well.
Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6). He is not just a way; He is the only way. He is the only one who can make the promise – with no disclaimers – that when you come to Him, you’ll never thirst again.

This Water is for You
It is not by accident that Jesus likened the abundant life He gives to water. Think about it: where would you be without water? It quenches your thirst; gives life to animals and plants so you can have food to eat, cleans your body, and much more. Even though you probably don’t think much about it, you are dependent on water. Physically speaking, you’ll die without it.

Spiritually speaking, what you need most is an intimate relationship with God.

Think back to the woman at the well. When Jesus revealed what He knew about her (John 4:17), He did not condemn her. Instead, He let her know that her past did not disqualify her from receiving God’s love and acceptance.

Maybe people have rejected you; or maybe you’ve lived a life of sin; maybe you once experienced a close relationship with God but something drew you away. You need to know that nothing you have ever done could diminish God’s love for you. Today, Jesus still invites all who are thirsty to come to Him.

I challenge you to accept Jesus’ offer of the living water. Know that the one who loved and accepted the woman who looked for love in all the wrong places loves and accepts you, too.
Here is a prayer you can pray to receive the living water Jesus offers:

Dear God, I believe that Jesus is the way, the truth and the life, that He died on the cross and shed His precious blood for me. I believe in my heart that He rose from the dead, victorious over death, sin, and the devil. I surrender my life to You and receive forgiveness for every sin I’ve ever committed. Jesus, I am Yours, now and forever! Heavenly Father, thank You for hearing my prayer. My past is gone, my sins are forgiven, I am Your child, on my way to heaven and part of Your eternal kingdom – in Jesus’ name. Amen.

When you received Jesus as the Lord and Savior of your life – whether it was ten seconds ago or fifty years ago – you took your first drink of living water. But please don’t stop with just a sip of the water God freely gives. He came so you might have life – and have it to the full.

Be aware of God’s presence today and every day. Keep on letting the Lord satisfy your thirst! Run to Him first in every situation so He can flood your soul with His love and provision.

(All scriptures are from the New King James Version of the Bible unless otherwise stated.)