Forming a Passionate People
Jesus once told a Samaritan woman whom he met at a well: “If you knew the gift of God and who is saying to you, ‘Give me a drink,’ you would have asked him and he would have given you living water” (John 4:10).
No matter who we are, we all thirst for fulfillment. We look to things like family life, success, money, good health, even acts of service to give us a sense of satisfaction. These can be good things, but Jesus tells us that our deepest fulfillment will come only when we drink his living water.
The Samaritan woman could not grasp Jesus’ words. Thinking that Jesus was offering her physical water, she responded eagerly: “Sir, give me this water, so that I may not be thirsty” (John 4:15). So Jesus patiently told her that he was offering a different kind of water, the kind that would bring her complete fulfillment. In the end, she was filled with living water when she accepted Jesus as the Messiah. And once she was filled, she put down her water jar, went into her village, and brought all the townspeople to Jesus.
A Passionate Church. In this issue we want to focus on the kind of passion that moved the Samaritan woman and all the first Christians. We want to see why these people were so dedicated to Jesus and to building the church, even in the face of insurmountable odds. They endured hardship, persecution, and even death, but nothing deterred them. For instance, St. Paul was determined to evangelize people, to develop the doctrines of the faith, and to form the church. He willingly walked away from a bright future as a leading Pharisee and dedicated his life to Christ and his people.
We want to see how Jesus can give us a similar passion for him and his church. He wants us to “go . . . and make disciples” (Matthew 28:19). He wants us to love one another from the heart (John 15:12). And he wants us to know that his grace is fully capable of igniting this passion within each of us.
How can we become this passionate? By drinking Jesus’ living water. He alone is capable of meeting our deepest needs and desires. All we have to do is say, “Jesus I am thirsty for you. I want your living water.”
We will know that this living water has fulfilled us and created a passion in us when we find that we can’t stop thinking about and praising and serving the Lord. We’ll know it when we want to love our family and friends more and ourselves less. We’ll know it when we look at the world, with all of its problems, and say, “Nothing will be impossible for God” (Luke 1:37).
Have Some Time to Blog? I wanted to let you know that as of this month, I will be blogging on our Web site a couple of times a week (www.wau.org). Blogging is a great way for us to keep in touch, exchange our views, and have some fun in a different forum. So come visit the site, click on the blog link, and drop me a line.
May God bless you.