Friday, November 9, 2007

Water Pt Deux

I wanted to continue my thoughts on water from a recent blog.

Here is an excerpt from an article from that they posted back in September.

An amazing thing happened a couple weeks ago. It was the opening day of the University of Central Florida’s new football stadium. This new $55 million dollar facility is a beauty. It has seats for over 43,000 screaming football fans, and on this day, every seat was filled. But something wasn’t right at the first game ever played in the stadium just outside Orlando. People were fainting. Actually, over a dozen people needed to be treated on this not surprisingly hot day in central Florida. According to news reports, emergency workers passed out free cups of water, but the hot temperatures were just too much for some people. Sounds like a sad story. Things like this happen on hot days. What’s so amazing about this story? I’m glad you asked...

You see, the new $55 million dollar facility was built with no water fountains. Not one. According to a local fire official, “We don’t have water fountains on the property here. So going to the water stations and making purchases of water or bringing bottled water with you is paramount.”

The obvious question is: “How do you build such a massive facility (in Orlando, FL of all places) and not allow for hydration of the 40,000+ people who will be utilizing the facility?” When you add the fact that there were no water fountains, the reality that people suffered from heat exhaustion is suddenly much less surprising. The stadium actually ran out of the $3.00 bottled waters from vendors as well. The University has openly apologized for ‘underestimating the need for water’.

I also know a mega church that built an auditorium that seats over 2000 and has only one drinking fountain in the lobby. Doesn’t sound like a problem until you have a sold out crowd for a concert on a hot summer night and no other source of water available to the audience. Planning is everything when you build a new facility, regardless if it’s a stadium or an auditorium.

You see when it comes right down to it, the church is in the water business. Only we don’t serve up just refreshment that comes from water fountains, we offer the Living Water that Jesus talks about in John 4. The type of water that we offer causes people to, as Jesus puts it, ‘never thirst again’.

When we think about our responsibility as Christ followers to provide fountains of this living water the question that comes to mind is why are there no lines outside of the majority of our churches to receive this water that quenches thirst?

Could it be that we are doing a poor job of letting people know that we have life giving water? (John 7:37-39; Rev. 21:6; 22:17)

Could it be that we are hoarding our water, fearing a drought? (Lamentations 5:4)

Could it be that we’ve polluted our fountains? (James 3:9-12)

Could it be that we have limited fountains in our churches? (2 Kings 2:19-21)

Maybe we need to get back to offering a cup of water in our Lord’s name? (Matt 10:42)

When will we realize that there a lot of thirsty people around us that are dying for lack of water?

Have a drink on me

Pastor Val

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