There is a huge difference between a cistern and a well. A cistern has to be filled with water from the outside. It is not self-renewing and can run dry. An artesian well has flowing water that bubbles up with its cool and refreshing blessing. This same difference exists between a person trying to be spiritual and a Spirit-filled person. When we become Christians, Jesus blesses us with His Holy Spirit. That presence and power in our lives makes all the difference in the world. It is His Living Water inside of us, renewing us, refreshing us, empowering us, quenching our thirst, and giving us life. Living for Jesus is more than just a spiritual commitment on our part requiring our effort; it is also the gift and blessing of His Holy Spirit—enabling us to live a life of power.
As Jesus cried out to the crowd, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.” It is probable that very few people listening had a clue who he was. People are pretty much the same today. If you ask people who Jesus is, you will get a wide range of answers. Like that day in Jerusalem, some will say that he is the Messiah, and others will say that he is a prophet. There will be a group who will claim that he was a great teacher and philosopher.
But there is another group. It is the one mentioned by Jesus “those who believe in me…” Out of those who believe, there should be flowing “rivers of living water.” It should be pretty easy to spot them, you might think. The Holy Spirit at work in a believer’s life would be made known by the fruits of the Spirit. Paul writes in Galatians, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.” With this flowing out of our lives as believers, it seems that other groups would have to take notice. After all, Jesus says, “they will know us by our love for one another”—I think we can add to that, by the fruit they see us bare.
Today, let those rivers of refreshing flow out from us to a parched and thirsty world.