Marcia Carole in the studio, a new painting begins.
We’re having a heat wave in Seattle, so my lovely, straight and smooth hair, that is – my wig, has been tossed aside for comfort. It has been a few months since I was totally bald; I have not been wearing the wig for warmth. I’ve just always wanted straight hair, and it has been fun “having” it. Yesterday, I threw off the wig, and I plunged back into the world of curly hair – rather short, curly hair!
I’ve begun a piece while meditating on a passage of Scripture where Jesus describes Himself as the giver of “living water.” It’s an interesting pair of words to think about. They go together when they are in reference to Him. When I have looked in other parts of the Bible, the words “living water” refer to the Holy Spirit. That seems to head one into murkier waters, so to speak, because the third person of the Trinity is involved.
I do know more than I, at first, think I do about the Holy Spirit. He is the comforter, life giving, the healer, the witness bearer to Jesus, the empowerer to live a life following Jesus, and He is always honoring Jesus. The tension with the words “living water” is; I can picture one – water, but not the other – living. I need water to live, Living water gives me a new life. My brain begins hurting as I think about it.
Then, I think of my wig. I’ve enjoyed this fake hair. It has looked great, but it’s not the real deal. It’s synthetic hair, and it doesn’t feel good or seem right to wear anymore. It’s hair, but not living hair.
In the end, I decide Jesus is saying to us, having a relationship with Him, having this “living water,” is the way of having the real deal – Him at the center of who we are, our wellspring of life, and the one who gives us ultimate hope for this life and the next. This Holy Spirit powered transformation – me, money, power, career, relationships and even my art, are no longer being central in my life (plain old water), to Him being central (“living water”) becomes more understandable as I jettison my wig into a dresser drawer. In the heat of real life, we need the Real Deal – Jesus.
John 7:37-39 Now on the last day, the great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.’” But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.