16th Week in Ordinary Time, Thursday, Year II

Where there is water there is life. Any agricultural community will tell you that their livelihood depends on having a good and constant water supply. The Lord in today’s First Reading describes what he has to offer Israel in terms of an unending water supply: “living” water flows, it is not just still water stored in a cistern. Israel not only stopped drawing from the Lord as the source of life; they forgot about him completely after he had loved and protected them in the desert like a bridegroom and led them to a “garden land.”

The Lord is the source of our life. No substitutes. The Israelites in today’s First Reading tried to replace him with cisterns for holding water that didn’t even work. Anyone who has lived in a drought knows how the life simply dries up and withers with the lack of water: green plants turn to brown, livestock dies, and the earth dries and cracks, becoming inhospitable for planting. We must always stay close to the source of our life. Every bit of clean water we see should remind us of the day of our baptism when the Lord adopted us as his sons and daughters. He established a living flow of grace in us that only dries up if we distance ourselves from him, its Source.

If life seems a little dry or you are in full drought, seek out its Source. He is much closed than you think.

Readings: Jeremiah 2:1–3, 7–8, 12–13; Psalm 36:6–7b, 8–11; Matthew 13:10–17. See also 24th Week in Ordinary Time, Saturday and 16th Week in Ordinary Time, Thursday.