“With joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation.”
I’m sure all of you can imagine a time when you were hot and thirsty. For me in particular, that’s a nearly daily occurrence; I’m a fan of a daily hot yoga class. I spend 90 minutes in a sweltering 105 degree room, (some of you might consider that insanity, I know) making a desperate attempt at Ujjayi “victorious (ironically laughing at translation)” breathing through difficult poses. I, dead serious, spend a quarter of the class praying, “Teach me discipline, Lord,” over and over again, because I desperately want to give up. At this point I am so thirsty, that the bottle of water in front of me is taunting me; however, I know all too well that if I chug it down, I’ll be disgustingly nauseated by the time I’m twisted up into full locust followed by a floor bow, wishing I hadn’t done that.
As soon as I swing open the door to the air-conditioned lobby, I crack open that water bottle, and I’m certain there is nothing in the world that tastes better than that half frozen bottle of water. That sense of contentment and fulfillment is written in every little word when Isaiah says, “With joy we will draw water.”
To give a little background to the context of the scripture, God’s people were living in a literal and spiritual desert. The Lord desired for His people to discover the “wells of salvation” in their circumstances. The prophet Isaiah compared the salvation of God to a well from which the most quenching and refreshing of all waters could be drawn. Isaiah 12 is a hymn, praising our Lord for His unending faithfulness in keeping His promises. Isaiah encouraged the desert dwellers to seek God’s “wells of salvation,” and they would experience the cool water of God’s strength, grace, and joy.
The hot thirsty feeling is our time of struggle (or in my case, the pool of sweat I’m standing in). Just as God’s people felt in the desert, we too experience fear, doubt, and uncertainty. We are wanderers in a desert, that doesn’t always give us a glimpse of the oasis to come; however, just as His people realized that they would not die because of His faithfulness, we too will overcome our circumstances. We will do this because we are drinking from the “wells of salvation.” They are eternal, and just as I swing back that bottle of water, I will choose to drink up the cool quenching water from the “spring of life.” Its water will pool in my soul and my heart, filling me with the matchless faithfulness of the Lord.
It wasn’t even a day later after I had read this passage in Isaiah, that my little family and I were out on the town, when I had a craving for a slushy (healthy, right?!). So we drove across the highway, pulling into a Sonic. We each chose our sugary concoctions and waited for the wheeled car-hop to bring us our drinks. It must be the creative in me, but as soon as I saw the cup designs beaming out over her tray, I instantly smiled. Whoever illustrated those neon, joy-filled color block illustrations, did a fantastic job! They felt like summer, and isn’t that what a good illustration aims to do, evoke emotion. So as I peered down at my small cup of frozen grape limeade, I saw the happiest of all illustrations! I knew immediately that a version of her belonged in my Bible.
So I got to work on drawing her on my Bible page, and to my absolute surprise, my little one took a nap for nearly three hours. I would bet that this might have been the first time ever (never to occur again); and not only did I get her drawn in, I also had time to color her in. I had recently made a couple purchases at my local Tuesday Morning, and that included a 5-pack of Letraset pro-markers. I hardly ever purchase markers because, honestly, I’m not very skilled with them; however, these were beautiful, and I just had to have them.
How did my subconscious know that I would need these exact colors the following day? It seemed like everything in the universe was lining up so that I could create this one page in my Bible! Isn’t it amazing when things like that happen?!
I just love her, and I love to picture her slurping up the cool refreshing “waters of salvation.” Maggie Holmes’ “Happy Heart” said it all about how this passage and this page made me feel!