The following is a post from friend and pastor Eric “MadPastor” Keller. He is the pastor of Bethany Church in Illinois. You can check out his website here and you can follow him on Twitter @themadpastor. I follow Eric’s writings and enjoy learning from such a strong Christian brother. I highly recommend you check him out. Thanks Eric for the contribution!
Today I did something very exciting. I flushed out my water heater.
Water heaters are pretty simple. They are large tanks that hold several gallons of water. The water inside gets heated up so when you turn the knob at the faucet with the “h” on it, hot water comes out. If you have a teenage daughter that takes long, hot showers, the water heater runs out of the hot water it is holding inside. It has to refill and heat that new water. “Mom, we’re out of hot water again!”
The water heater needs a source of water. That’s why there’s a water pipe going in to it. Of course that water needs to get out of the tank and get to the shower. That’s why there’s a second pipe leading out. There also has to be a power source to heat the water. If you have a natural gas heater like mine, it has a metal pipe leading to the bottom that provides gas to keep a flame burning underneath the tank. If the flame goes out, the water doesn’t get heated… but the teenager does because now she has to take cold showers. Which is probably a good thing when you think about it.
Dirt can build up in the bottom of the tank so every once in a while our water heaters need to be flushed out. You simply turn off the unit and drain the tank. When you do this you can see all the sand, rust, and residue come pouring out. It can be pretty gross. But doing this will prolong the life of the unit and you’ll have cleaner water as well. And you’ll have a good sense of satisfaction for a job well done.
This is a good analogy for us. We are like water heaters.
We are all filled with the waters of life. We go to work, raise our children, pay the bills, and do other things like eat pizza and go bowling. But if we do too much, we’ll run out of hot water and our tanks will run dry. We need a reliable life source.
Many of us find our source of energy in wells that run dry. We look to relationships, careers, drugs, even sex. All of these feed us in one way or another and any one of them can provide some energy. But they are imperfect and they are only temporary. Sooner or later we need more energy in our lives.
Often times the power we use to heat ourselves fails. Like a flame that goes dim or a pilot light that burns out the source of heat for our lives goes out. When relationships start to go bad we say things like, “The flame just isn’t as strong,” or “There’s just no fire anymore.”
We need to tap into a source that doesn’t run out, of water or heat.
One day, Jesus met a woman at a well. They talk about religion and family. Jesus had been walking and he must have been thirsty so he asked her for a drink of water. Then he offered her some of his water. He called it living water and he said, “Everyone who drinks this water [from the well] 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.” –John 4:13-14
Imagine having a spring of water coming into your life that never runs dry. Imagine having a power source that keeps it heated, that never allows that water to go cold. Imagine how much different your life would be. Of course you will still face challenges. Of course you will still face hard times. Yes, life will still get dirty and will wear you down. Jesus never said he would take the hardships of life away. He said he was the Living Water that we need to be cleansed and be nourished.
Are you thirsty? Do you need to wash the things of the world away? Jesus said if you accept the water he offers you will never thirst again. Aren’t you ready to feel that kind of satisfaction?
Eric “MadPastor” Keller