I haven’t drawn or painted many florals. It’s not that I don’t like flowers, in fact flower gardening was one of my hobbies until we moved into our town home. Last summer I took time to paint a few florals using a technique I’d never tried. I decided to post this floral in Acrylic.
I chose it to help focus on this week’s Thought–Dehydration. Even non-gardeners know plants require an appropriate amount of water. If they don’t get it, they will dehydrate and, if not attended, become unproductive at best or even die.
Ever been seriously dehydrated? I was, once. I’ll spare the list of unpleasant symptoms. I’ll just say, I wish never to go there again!
We know human ‘dehydration’ occurs when we use or lose more fluid than we take in, and our body doesn’t have enough water and other fluids to carry out its normal functions. If you don’t replace lost fluids, you soon become dehydrated.
In my meditation the other day I was drawn to parallels between physical and spiritual dehydration. What do our physical and our spiritual lives each require to properly function?
- Physically, health care professionals tell us the average adult requires about 2 liters of water daily—not all at once! Depending on circumstances, the need may even increase.
- Spiritually, it’s similar. Followers of Jesus’ spiritual bodies require daily ingestion of God’s truth. Psalm 1 says, “Blessed [spiritually hydrated] is the one whose “…delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law, he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither.
Psalm 23 reflects this truth: “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul.” Jesus calls his followers his sheep. As the shepherd he continues to restore their soul through the quiet waters of his words. Revelation 7:17 continues this truth: “For the Lamb at the center of the throne will be the shepherd; he will lead them to springs of living water. “
Let’s take a minute to unpack the Psalmists words “he restores my soul”. He could have just as easily said: he restores my ‘mind’, or he restores my ‘heart’, to convey what I see at the root of his meaning. The “law of the Lord [water of God’s truth] that “he meditates on day and night” provides the spiritual hydration without which he cannot maintain health and thrive. How does this work? There is a sense in which the mind is the most significant aspect of our lives because it is through our minds that we make effective contact with reality.
“God has created us so that the ultimate freedom we have as individuals is the power to select what we will allow or require our minds to dwell upon and think about…The focus of your thoughts significantly affects everything else that happens in your life and evokes the feelings that frame your world and motivates your actions.
“Thoughts are where we make our first movement toward God and where the divine Spirit begins to direct our will to God and his way. We have the ability and responsibility to keep God present in our minds, and those who do so will make steady progress toward him, for he will respond by making himself known to us. One of the most powerful elements within the realm of our minds is that of ideas. Our ideas form the belief system upon which we base our actions and decisions, and these in turn determine the trajectory of our lives.”
“Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed [spiritually dehydrated] and who correctly handles the word [water] of truth.” 2 Timothy 2:15
Jesus’ conversation with the woman at the well in John 4 reflects on the parallel need for physical water to sustain physical life and the need for the water of His words to initiate and sustain spiritual life. “Everyone who drinks this water [physical] will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water [Jesus’ words] I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” John 4:13, 14
“To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life.” Revelation. 21:6
 Life Without Lack, Living in the Fullness of Psalm 23