Saint Augustine grass is dying…say it ain’t so!!! I remember vividly the St. Augustine grass in my grandmother’s yard. The cool feel of the blades on my bare feet as I walked across the yard was a wonderful thing to experience in the middle of July. She had decided to put that type of grass in her yard because of chiggers. The challenge with St Augustine grass is that you have to water it frequently.
Having enough water to soak St Augustine grass is becoming a problem in Wichita Falls. Let me take that back…that IS a problem in Wichita Falls. That north Texas city has been in a severe drought now for a few years. That’s not to say they don’t sometimes get rain. But, its certainly not often enough to keep the lakes replenished with H20. One friend told me that Lake Arrowhead had dipped to below 25% capacity. That saddened me as I remember fishing on that lake when I was stationed in Wichita Falls. Now the docks are at least 100 feet from any water. They have found old fishing poles and long lost wallets, but that’s hardly a concession for a city in deep need of water.
The city relies upon lakes for its drinking water and now they are pressing with a plan to pipe treated sewer water into homes. We used to call this ‘gray water’ not potable. Golf courses would often use it to water their fairways. But, I certainly never considered running up under the sprinklers with my mouth open wide. But, in fairness our technologies for water purification have made progress in providing drinking water. But, I have a suspect if I were in Wichita Falls now I would be spending a lot of money on bottled water.
Our spiritual life operates a lot like the water situation in Wichita Falls. When we walk with the Lord in intimacy our spiritual water reservoir stays full and nourishes our spiritual life. But, when we stray from the source of that Living Water we find areas of our life that go into drought mode. Just as a town with limited water supply has to limit water consumption, so too does a believer go into a water starvation mode where their relationship with the Lord begins to fade from the luster they once enjoyed. The relationship doesn’t change legally. But, the intimacy of the person’s walk with God certainly begins to feel distanced.
In Ephesians 5:26, Paul refers to the relationship Jesus Christ has with the church as, ” having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word.” Water is a big deal. Ask anyone in Wichita Falls. We must have it in our physical world and we must have it in our spiritual walk in Jesus Christ. It’s easy to see the effects of the drought in Wichita Falls. Where you could once find those lush St. Augustine yards, you can find many that are now dying. The spiritual landscape also finds people who once walked closely with the Lord. But, along the way they drifted away from the rivers of living water.
The answers to the drought in Wichita Falls do not come quickly. Water is simply in short supply. Thankfully in Christ, there is no shortage of living water. But, we have to appropriate it for our life and not choose to wander in the desert. The wonder of a vibrant relationship with Christ far surpasses the joys of wiggling your toes in St Augustine grass. You may have walked a million steps away from living water. Amazingly, it is only one step back to Jesus Christ. If only the equation for Wichita Falls could be so straightforward.