Monday, March 24, 2014

Hungry and Thirsty

Women of Faith:
Are you hungry? Are you thirsty? By what, whom or how are you being nourished? Is it lasting, or are you constantly looking for more?

I was fed this past week by family, by spending time in Colorado with our new grandson, Caleb Joseph (born 3-9-14 to Sara and Luke, on his big sister Karolina’s 4th birthday, and joined by a very proud big brother, Colby.) Kristy, Tyler and Avery also joined us.
So we had two babies who very vocally made known to us like clockwork just how important it was to eat and drink, of our need to be fed.

And I was watered by this week’s readings and through our travel time, which allowed us silence and time to listen to God’s teachings in Scripture, on the radio and by visiting another church community.
Without food and water we could not survive—they are both necessities of life: physically, spiritually, even emotionally.

Symbolically the readings, especially this week were loaded with spiritual “living water”and the food provided by Jesus’ example—physically in His teachings (Scripture and Church) and spiritually by the nourishment He left us in the Body of Christ (grace and Sacraments.)
"In those days, in their thirst for water, the people grumbled against Moses, saying, “Why did you ever make us leave Egypt? Was it just to have us die here of thirst with our children and our livestock?” So Moses cried out to the LORD, “What shall I do with this people? A little more and they will stone me!” The LORD answered Moses, …“Strike the rock, and the water will flow from it for the people to drink.” Ex 17: 3-7
"A woman of Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give me a drink.” His disciples had gone into the town to buy food. The Samaritan woman said to him, “How can you, a Jew, ask me, a Samaritan woman, for a drink?” —For Jews use nothing in common with Samaritans.—Jesus answered and said to her, “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.” The woman said to him, “Sir, you do not even have a bucket and the cistern is deep; where then can you get this living water? Are you greater than our father Jacob, who gave us this cistern and drank from it himself with his children and his flocks?” Jesus answered and said to her, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again; but whoever drinks the water I shall give will never thirst; the water I shall give will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water, so that I may not be thirsty or have to keep coming here to draw water.” Jn 4:5-42
In Exodus the people physically threatened Moses because they felt as if they were being left in the desert to die without food and water—which God provided through the power of miracles where he allowed water to flow from rock, and justenough manna each day for a daily serving. (Ex 16:4) (These verses prophetically tie to the need for water (Baptism) and to be fed daily by the transformation of bread into the Eucharist celebrated daily—the Jewish root of Mass.)
In the story of the unnamed Samaritan woman at the well she represents the lost, the lonely, the spiritually malnourished, the outcast, and the sinner—all of humanity. It is her “thirsting”for more and then her response in faith which gives her spiritual fulfillment.
Her encounter with Jesus ties us to our eternal salvation through the Sacraments of Baptism (by Christ’s grace poured out we are given new life), Eucharist (Jesus is the ”living” food and through our reception of the sacrificial meal we will never die), Reconciliation (although she was a Samaritan and a sinner forgiveness is offered to everyone), and Marriage (despite the guy she lived with and the five previous “husbands” Jesus is the perfected seventh—a representation as her one true and only eternal spouse. (In those days when a man met a single woman at the well she often became his spouse.))

(For more listen to: “I’m Not Being Fed” by Jeff Cavins available at

When I thirst and hunger, when I feel spiritually lost or lonely, when I recognize my sin, I am fed and I am watered through simple prayer (a response in faith) or by going to the well’s of reception, the Sacraments: attending church (seeking the fulfillment of His community) and by physically and spiritually being fed by Him in the Eucharist, or by seeking His forgiveness thru the Sacrament of Reconciliation.
And I am fed by the grace received in my vocation, marriage, through serving and through being served by my spouse—by sacramentally fulfilling my call, in the Spirit of sacrifice (doing for another) and in the joy of being lifted up, encouraged and accepted, by another.

Lord, I thirst and I hunger for the washing of my soul and food that strengthens my Spirit. Help me to respond to my deepest needs in faith. Take away the junk food of “happy meals” and shallow societal thoughts and allow me to be nourished by the deep well you have left in the teachings of the Church Fathers and through Your offering of daily, healthy food , the Eucharist. Amen.
Fill your body AND your soul with more than junk—search for the living water and the Body of Christ,

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