We had quite the challenge before us: get precious water to the Barangay mountain village in Balluay, Phillipines. It would not be easy, but this community was depending upon it, and we would not fail.
This community would now have running water! No cost is too great to give a community something so essential to live. But while the work was good and necessary, it was not our only aim. No, we also came to show these people the love and compassion of the Body of Christ. To give water, and to give Living Water.
When Jesus is addressing the crowds in John 7 and starts talking about Living Water, everyone knows exactly what he means. There are three methods for getting water in the ancient world: wells, cisterns, and springs. Cisterns are the most common and the least favorable. They are huge, man-made vats that merely collect rain water and runoff from the ground. They're sludgey and stale and stagnant. The only redeeming quality is that (hopefully) all of the sludge will sink to the bottom so the water will be somewhat clear. They are certainly not ideal. Now springs and wells on the other hand, ah, now that is ideal. Cool and clean and running water, straight from the belly of the earth. It is actually refreshing and life-giving compared to the stale mess of the cisterns! Jesus is that running, cool, refreshing, live-giving water. In a place where cistern water was the norm, Jesus is saying he is the eternal spring, an eternal source of life.
And so we come. We come to give good water to bodies who so badly need it. We come to give Living Water to these souls who so badly thirst for it.