John 7:37-44 (NLT)
37 On the last day, the climax of the festival, Jesus stood and shouted to the crowds, “Anyone who is thirsty may come to me! 38 Anyone who believes in me may come and drink! For the Scriptures declare, ‘Rivers of living water will flow from his heart.’ ” 39 (When he said “living water,” he was speaking of the Spirit, who would be given to everyone believing in him. But the Spirit had not yet been given, because Jesus had not yet entered into his glory.) 40 When the crowds heard him say this, some of them declared, “Surely this man is the Prophet we’ve been expecting.” 41 Others said, “He is the Messiah.” Still others said, “But he can’t be! Will the Messiah come from Galilee? 42 For the Scriptures clearly state that the Messiah will be born of the royal line of David, in Bethlehem, the village where King David was born.” 43 So the crowd was divided about him. 44 Some even wanted him arrested, but no one laid a hand on him.
Jesus was under enormous pressure. He has family pressures from his brothers (see John 7:3-4), He’s at the Festival of Shelters where the Jewish leaders a literally looking for an opportunity to kill Him (see John 7:19), and He’s among a dumb crowd that just doesn’t get it (see v40-42). Yet, despite these pressures, He still invited thirsty people to come to Him. When He had every reason to retreat into self-preservation, into some well-deserved “me time”, He cared for others.
I need to grow in my capacity. I need to establish a standing order with myself that myself doesn’t belong to myself – I belong to God (1 Corinthians 6:19). And because of that I need to make room in my day, in my head, in my life, for serving others. That’s what Jesus did, I must do the same.
Jesus, thanks for setting such an amazing example for me. As I establish this standing order to make room for others, please grow my capacity to love – even when I feel I can’t.
Written by Boudy Van Noppen