One of my favorite comedy bits from my childhood was Billy Cosby’s “Noah”. While not strictly by the “Book”, it forever created an incredible image of the Biblical narrative of Noah. Clearly I am not alone in my fondness of the characterization of Noah’s conversation with God. With our near-record-breaking rain fall, there have been more than a few folks who have quoted parts of this routine.
Endless rain, overflowing rivers, streets, homes and businesses being flooded, hillsides being washed away – the incredible power of water has been experienced first hand by many Minnesotans, more so than they can remember.
Not long ago I spent a day with a group of young people reflecting on the following words from the fourth chapter of John:
“Jesus answered her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is that 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 have no bucket, and the well is deep. Where do you get that living water? Are you greater than our ancestor Jacob, who gave us the well, and with his sons and his flocks drank from it?” Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, but those who drink of the water that I will give them will never be thirsty. The water that I will give will become in them a spring of water gushing up to eternal life.””
One young person made what I thought was a simple, yet profound, statement, “Water is unpredictably powerful”. His suggestion was not just about a cup of water or a downpour of rain, but living water as well. When we drink from the living water that Jesus speaks about, we are nourished, but the course of our lives will potentially be changed dramatically.
Bill Cosby makes me laugh when I think about Noah’s conversation with God and about his impending life altering encounter with water. Jesus’ words about our encounter with living water remind me how truly transformative water can be!