Are you thirsty?

Presently, I have had the opportunity to gather weekly with a group of young leaders (no I’m not one of the young ones) to discuss our faith and why we believe what we believe.  We are going through a video series by Kyle Idleman titled H2O, A Journey of Faith.  The series has several great topics which center on the theme that we all go through life attempting to quench a “thirst”.  “Kyle defines this thirst as an inner desire that demands satisfaction and says that people are thirsty for something that can’t be satisfied with the stuff of this world.”  Can anyone of you relate?

How would you answer the question Idleman asks, “If I only had ______, then I’d be happy!”  As you may relate, there are key areas that people tend to turn toward to quench this thirst.  Things like possessions, achievement, or relationships are all areas we tend to focused to bring “happiness” to our lives in attempt to quench this thirst.

For example, we’ve all likely heard or even experienced the example of “money”.  “If I only had money, then I’d be happy!” – Right?  Studies have shown that most people think that if they had an extra 40-50% more income, they would be happy.  Many of you have likely experienced this firsthand and, even if you haven’t, you’ve heard that “money can’t buy happiness” long term.

What about achievement?  In his book, The Jersey Effect, Hunter Smith talks about the experience many of the Indianapolis Colts, to include himself, had after becoming Super Bowl XLI Champions.  Hunter Smith and co-author, Darrin Gray, talk about the stories of coaches, players, and other members of the team having the dream of winning a Super Bowl and the ultimate satisfaction it would bring.  Stop and think about this for a minute.  For most, they had dedicated their lives and there were years of preparation from early childhood focused at preparing for this one moment in time.  Finally, it was hear…WOW!  Then, somewhat startling, Smith discloses that it took no longer than the “plane ride home for many of these players to become humbled asking the question: “Is this is it?”  These Super Bowl Champions as well as many others who have pursued “achievement” to quench the thirst, found that once they arrive, it wasn’t enough.

So, what about relationships?  You likely can relate, or know others, who have had that longing for that special someone to come along and quench this thirst.  For example, maybe it’s that teenage girl trying to find her self-esteem believing that “If only I had a boyfriend, then I’d be happy!”  Or, maybe it’s a married couple who finds themselves saying “If only he/she would _____, then I’d be happy!”  In these examples and many others, we always find that when we turn to relationships with other people to quench the thirst, they end up letting us down.  In many cases, these situations can be quit devastating to our lives.

So, what is it that will quench this thirst?  Idleman shares, which I also have experienced firsthand, that the only way this thirst will ever be quenched is through a “relationship with Jesus Christ”.  For some, this may be new; if so, please reach out to me firsthand and I’d love to talk further.  For others, like most in our group of young leaders and likely many reading this blog post, Jesus being the only way to quench this thirst is nothing new.  However, a question many might be asking is, “what does it look like to have Jesus quench your thirst?”

Well, this question was posed to our group this week and there were some really great responses.  Below are a few of those responses:

  • “A relationship with Jesus is kind of like a relationship with your best friend.”
  • “Jesus is one you can share anything with without a fear of being judge; his love is unconditional.”
  • “He normally doesn’t talk to me in an “audible” voice; however, I know He is there.  He talks to me through scripture, worship songs, devotionals, circumstances, other people, and many other ways difficult to describe.”

Another topic, which was an apparent theme in our discussion, was the need to “be still”.  The entire group discussed how busy our lives are today with “activity”.  Things like sports, school, work, electronic devices, and a cast of thousands of others.  Many of these things being “worldly” activities focused at quenching the thirst versus having “eternal significance”.  The group emphasized that if you really want to hear Jesus in your life, sometimes you need to “be still” and listen.  Much like talking with your best friend, you’re not going to hear them if you simply don’t turn down the volume of life and listen.  The group discussed that there are some ways they have become more intentional about this, however, really it’s more a way of living life in continual relationship with Jesus.

Finally, I think it’s important to recognize that just because we have “a relationship with Jesus Christ” that doesn’t mean we’re always going to be happy or have our thirst quenched at all times.  The scope of “happiness versus joy” is well beyond today’s writing; however, important to understand.  Our thirst being quenched looks like an inner “joy and peace” that no matter the circumstances, I am going to be OK and there is an eternal destination that I’m headed which is not of this world.  Stay tuned for a future post on “happiness versus joy”.

I hope today’s post has helped you in quenching that inner thirst.  It is such a great blessing to have a group of young leaders in our lives to have this type of open dialog.  We encourage you to share your thoughts below by commenting on this or other posts.  As always, if you’d like to have a personal conversation on what a relationship with Jesus Christ look’s like, I’d love to hear more of your story and share more of mine.

Have a FANTASTIC day!

God bless, Chris

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