Wednesday, July 17, 2013
Last week we made a day trip over to Flovilla, Georgia to attend Indian Springs Camp Meeting. Indian Springs is a holiness camp meeting which has been going on now since 1890. A lot of things have changed in the camp meeting ministry since 1890. Preachers wear polo shirts instead of black suits and white shirts. Even though funeral home fans still are laying around, the open air tabernacle actually has some air conditioning. However, some things remain the same. It is one of the few preaching places anymore where what is called Wesleyan Holiness is still preached. The preacher for the morning service preached on the text from John which tells the story of the woman at the well.
What really made his sermon memorable was something which took place after the benediction. We went to nearby Indian Springs State Park where there are several natural springs flowing out of the ground. A long time ago the Creek Indians lived in the area and they regarded water from the springs as water which had curative powers. Folks still do. The park employees give a handout which tells anyone interested enough to read how the water is said to enhance health. But, to make a long story short, there was a woman at this well. Ok. Actually, it was a spring. But, she was there along with her family drawing water in a couple dozen plastic gallon jugs. As we visited, she talked about the power of the water. So, I heard my second sermon in less than an hour. One was preached about the woman at the well and the other was preached by the woman at the well.
It got my attention. When I got home, I spent some time reading that old story of this remarkable encounter Jesus had with the woman of Samaria. It was not a passage I have preached from a great deal over the years, but I find myself thinking about returning to that text for preaching soon. As I read it again and remembered those two moments, I found myself being nurtured once more by this living water. No matter what anyone says, nothing quenches our heart-thirst like the living water Jesus gives.