It doesn’t take much thought to recognize how important water is to all of us. Scientists tell us we can live 2 weeks to 30 days without food, but only 3 days without water. That in itself would give us pause to think and thank. Too often when we read about or talk about water we think BIG: oceans, seas, lakes, rivers. I would suggest that it is time to check out the small.
It was during a Thanksgiving dinner party that each person was to share what they were most thankful for excluding family and other relationships. We would take it for granted that would come first. But what of other things for which we are thankful. Take the kitchen for example. Sarah, with three young children, said she was thankful for the “trap door” in the refrigerator, which enabled them to get milk or juice without opening the big door. Lexie, newlywed, was most thankful for her microwave. Alice named her refrigerator earning her gratitude. Great Grandma Bertha said running water, tap water was the best for her. Not having to go to the well for water morning and evening was a blessing.
Let’s look at just plain tap water. Do we ever take it for granted! And yet millions of people do not have that luxury. How often do we turn the tap and get water. We use it for everything from washing the dirt off potatoes, to wiping the pesticides from the apples. We fill a pot to cook the beans, or add a quart to extend the soup. We just take it for granted safe water will be there.
Water was used as an example of the rewards we can expect for our positive actions. “Whoever gives a cup of cold water in my name, will receive a reward.” I think if I were the person who turns the wheel at the water works that sends the water rushing to all the faucets in the city, I would pray, “I give all this water to all these people in your name Lord.” (Leave it to me to set myself up for a big reward!)
Actually most of the things we are offered as examples in the gospel involve simple things, and quite often water: Cana, the lack of it at Simon’s house when Mary washed Jesus feet with her tears, moving the crippled man to the water for healing, those simple fishermen and their boats on the sea, Jesus washing the feet of the apostles at the Last Supper. Water, simply water must be a big part of our Thank You prayers this week.
Remember that when you are brushing your teeth, or washing your hair, or rinsing out your hose. There is never any time when you would want to separate God from your everyday thoughts.
I’d give more than a penny for your thoughts!
Sisters of St. Francis, Oldenburg