I decided to listen to a CES fireside talk by Elder David A. Bednar as I drove into work this morning. It’s called “A Reservoir of Living Water” and it’s one of my favorites. I watched the original broadcast a few years ago at the MCC institute building, and I remember feeling the incredible power of the message then. That night I wrote down only a few lines of notes, but one thing I wrote down was a quote he gave from President Boyd K. Packer in which, speaking of the rising generation of Latter-day Saints, President Packer stated that “the revelations will be opened to them as to no other in the history of the world.” I remember hearing this and feeling a powerful spiritual witness come over me. I knew that it was true, and that I wanted to realize that prophetic promise in my own life.
I wanted to share a connection that was made in my mind as I listened this morning. Elder Bednar said this-
“’Jesus answered and said unto her, whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again. But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him, shall never thirst. But the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water, springing up into everlasting life.’ The living water referred to in this episode is a representation of the Lord, Jesus Christ, and His gospel; and as water is necessary to sustain physical life, so the Savior and his doctrines, principles, and ordinances are essential for eternal life. You and I need his living water daily, and in ample supply, to sustain our ongoing spiritual growth and development. The scriptures contain the words of Christ and are a reservoir of living water, to which we have ready access, and from which we can drink deeply and long.”
Since my return from Georgia, I’ve wanted to return to the pattern of reading and studying which I enjoyed before my two week training began. During the training I found it difficult to choose to read my scriptures or pray very often. I allowed myself to slip into the pattern of “doing the easy thing”, and either spent my time sleeping or watching movies; or wasted it on other fruitless exploits. Now that I’m home, although I have the desire to read and pray sincerely, I find it difficult to do so because of the pattern of self-gratification I’ve set. As a result, I’ve struggled to shake the weariness I feel most of the time and focus my mind and my will toward reading and praying sincerely. As I listened to this talk today, I thought of the process I’ve gone through in my life with regard to drinking water.
Throughout my life there have been more than a few times in which I’ve realized that I need to drink more water. I find myself dehydrated- weak, drained, weary- and I realize that it’s because I need more water. The process to switch from drinking other things to drinking water is rarely an easy one. At first, I don’t like the taste of the water, it doesn’t soothe my desires. But through experience I’ve learned that regardless of what drink I’m craving, if I choose to drink water consistently for a period of time, I’ll stop desiring the soda and the juices, and soon enough, I’ll actually want to drink water when I’m thirsty. It gets to the point where I don’t want to drink anything else; I actually crave water.
The number of connections in this parallel is far too great to be coincidental. The lesson I learned today is this: As regular intake of water is necessary for my physical survival, so is regular intake of the word of the Lord necessary for my spiritual survival. I must “drink deeply and long”, and must do so constantly and consistently, in order to maintain my spiritual health. Regardless of how difficult it is for me to pick up the scriptures, or to kneel in prayer; regardless of what other venture begs my attention; if I faithfully and consistently choose to drink from the living water, rather than from the “tasty” alternatives, in time I will find myself loving and craving that living water.