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Spiritual Receptivity

A Commentary by Constance Vanides

"As the deer pants for the water brooks, so pants my soul for You, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When shall I come and appear before God?" (Psalm 42:1-2)

He was our beautiful Golden Retriever pet. Unlike many who are trained as guide dogs, our family pup didn't take kindly to discipline. On command to fetch, Zon would gladly dash after the ball, catch it and run all over the place, but never drop the ball at our feet! His vigorous activity only served to make him tired and thirsty, panting visibly. Out would go his tongue, until the water dish was offered and he lapped the water with gusto!

This scene offers to show us how God would have us be towards Him.Are we desiring enough to have God before us to the extent that we pant for knowing God in anticipation of drinking in His Living Waters?

The Samaritan "Woman at the Well" in chapter 4 of the Gospel of John gives us the story of her encounter with Jesus. They dialogue together on theological matters, but deeper than that, she acknowledges Jesus as prophet and says to the men in the city, "Come, see a Man who told me all things that I ever did. Could this be the Christ?" (John 4:29) Suddenly she understood Jesus' meaning of "...Whoever drinks of this water will thirst again, but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water, springing up into everlasting life." (John 4:13-14) She then began to thirst, not of the water that came from the well, but of the water that Jesus offered.

Once you are cognizant of the fact that Jesus knows you and everything about you, your Spiritual eyes will always be open to God's presence with and in you. What more is there of life but the seeking after meaning? And we find this meaning comes directly from Jesus Himself when we seek Him with all our heart!

God is truly always with us. Whether He manifests Himself to us is something else! In this, let me quote directly from A.W. Tozer's writings.

    The Presence and the manifestation of the Presence are not the same. There can be the one without the other. God is here when we are wholly unaware of it. He is manifest only when and as we are aware of His presence. On our part, there must be surrender to the Spirit of God, for His work is to show us the Father and the Son. If we cooperate with Him in loving obedience, God will manifest Himself to us, and that manifestation will be the difference between a nominal Christian life and a life radiant with the light of His face." (The Pursuit of God, Chapter 5, The Universal Presence.)

What then? Are you truly thirsty for more of God? The word of God offers His promise, "...he who believes in Me shall never thirst." (John 6:35) And again, "And let him who thirsts come. And whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely." (Revelation 22:17b)

We need never, ever thirst again!

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© Constance Vanides