Revive Our Hearts Podcast

Satisfying Our Thirst, Part 8

Leslie Basham: Are you thirsty? The first step in getting our thirst satisfied is to admit we are in need.

This is Revive Our Hearts with Nancy DeMoss for Wednesday, July 17.

If you were working in your garden in the hot sun, and someone offered you a glass of lemonade, you'd probably take it. Wouldn't it be ridiculous for someone to refuse a drink because they were embarrassed of their thirst? Today, we'll hear how we can have that exact attitude when God offers to quench our thirst. Here's Nancy.

Nancy Leigh DeMoss: One of my very favorite promises in all the Scriptures comes from the Book of Isaiah, chapter 44, verse 3 (KJV), where God says, "I will pour water upon him that is thirsty, and floods upon the dry ground." We've been talking for the last week and a half about this matter of thirsts. We've said that we are all thirsty, but that the problem is that we've tried to satisfy our thirst in all the wrong places.

We saw yesterday that God wants to satisfy our thirsts and the deepest longings of our souls. God wants us to see that Jesus Christ Himself is God's provision for our thirsts. Not only does He give us living water--as He revealed Himself to the woman at the well--He is the Living Water that truly and lastingly satisfies. There is no other well, there is no other source, there is no other fountain that will satisfy us at the deepest parts of our lives.

So, how do we get our thirsts satisfied? We know that Jesus is the Living Water. He is the One that satisfies, and I want to spend some time over the next couple of days just talking about how we can find our thirsts satisfied in Him.

The first step, for many of us perhaps the hardest step, is to come to the place where we admit that we are thirsty--that we have longings that no one and nothing else can fill. That's why I loved that promise in Isaiah, chapter 44, because God says, "I will pour water on" what kind of person? On the thirsty person! I will "pour floods upon the dry ground."

We had quite a rain last week, and I was told here in Arkansas that we needed that rain really badly. Things were really dry, and people were so delighted to see the rain pouring down. We have to come to the place in our own lives where we get desperate for Christ--where we realize that we are dry, that the ground of our lives is parched, it's thirsty, it's needy, that we desperately need Him to come and fill us up.

Now, that's not an easy thing for some of us to admit, especially those of us who struggle with pride because we have an image to maintain. Some of us have been teaching the Word of God to others and have been involved in various kinds of ministry and spiritual leadership, and we go to Bible studies and may even teach Bible studies. And it may be hard for us to admit that we're really needy people.

Because other people look up to us, we have a reputation to maintain. And we think, I can't afford to let anybody know that I'm just a desperately needy person. We feel that we have to perform, that we have to look put together.

This is one of the struggles I face as a woman with a public ministry. People think you have it all together. In fact, I got an e-mail last week from one of my praying friends, who said she had been listening to Revive Our Hearts on the radio. She said that one particular day she turned it off in the middle, she fell on floor of her house weeping and saying, "I'll never be like Nancy, and she doesn't have any struggles." As I read this, I had to laugh to myself because I thought, If only she knew.

But the tendency is to want to maintain that reputation for others to think, as we do tend to think about each other, nobody knows my struggles. Nobody else has struggles like mine. If we could only just get honest enough with each other and with the Lord to say, "I am needy, I am thirsty."

As I've been preparing for this week's recordings for Revive Our Hearts, one of the biggest battles I have faced is feeling that my own heart has been so dry and needy. I'm thinking to myself, How can I offer anything to anyone else that will satisfy them when I'm so needy, I'm so thirsty.

That's why as I prepare these sessions, the first thing I try to do is let God fill my cup. See, Lord, I need this. This isn't for all those people who'll be listening on the radio. This isn't for all those ladies who'll be coming to attend those sessions. First, I need You to fill my cup. I have to get honest; admit that I don't have it all together, that I am a needy person.

You know, some women tend to think--I've heard this said--that if we really got honest about who we are and how desperately needy we are, that God would never accept us, that He wouldn't give us what He has to offer if He knew how bad-off we are. Well, of course God does know.

But you know, in God's economy, it's our very need that makes us candidates for His grace. The needier we are, the more qualified we are to receive what God has to give us. So why do we go around with our good Christian masks on pretending like we've got it all together; we have no need, we're all put together? We're too scared for anyone else to see how very needy we are. It's our need that makes us a candidate for His provision.

So, first we have to come to the place where we admit that we're thirsty. Then we have to come to the place were we identify the wells that we've been turning to in an effort to get our needs met, identify the wells to which we've been looking to quench our thirst.

What are the substitutes for God in our lives? What are the things, the people that we tend to turn to when we're thirsty? We all have those wells. And I would challenge you when we're done here today to go home and make a list of some of the wells that you have found yourself turning to at times of thirst.

But let's do a little exercise here just so we can see that we all have those wells. I want to ask you just off the top of your head, "What are some of the wells that you sometimes have found yourself turning to in an effort to get your needs met?" Let's just take a moment, and we're going to pass around the mic here. What are some of the substitutes that you sometimes look to in your life to fill your thirst and your hunger for God?

Audience Member: I find myself a lot of times turning to the approval of others and just wanting those words of approval and affirmation.

 Nancy Leigh DeMoss:Anybody here relate to that one?

Audience Member: I have a husband who is in full-time ministry and is a very godly man; and I think that I have looked to him to fill the void in my life spiritually, thinking that he will have all of the answers instead of the Lord. I still don't think I am at the bottom of that, even in my own heart.

Audience Member: Just as a married woman without children, I think the well that I find myself is pouring myself into my work and not being fulfilled by Christ.

Audience Member: Frequently with dealing with my son on drugs, rather than falling on my knees, I'll call a friend. It's been real convicting to me today that I need to fall on my knees first.

Nancy Leigh DeMoss: Now, is there anything wrong with calling a friend when you have a need? What becomes wrong is when that person becomes a substitute for God in my life. When I'm looking to that person, that friend, that experience, to meet a need that is so deep that only God really can meet it. When I'm turning to that person instead of to the Lord, then it becomes an idol in my life.

Audience Member: God showed me that I had taken the blessing of children--I have six children--and I was using that as a substitute for Him. Every time my baby got big enough to talk back or say, "No" or didn't seem like they needed me anymore, then I would want another one.

Because infants need you completely, and I didn't feel like anyone else did, I would just want another baby every time one got old enough to walk away from me. So, that was real hard to realize; but now that Jesus is what satisfies my heart, I can enjoy the blessing of my children.

Nancy Leigh DeMoss: I think you hit on something really important there. That is, when we yield up the idols of our hearts, we acknowledge them to be what they are as idols, things we've looked to as substitutes for God in our lives. Then God can allow us to truly enjoy His gifts and His blessings, not because we're demanding them but because we're receiving them as a gift from God that we hold loosely. It's not taking God's place in my life but is something that I can enjoy as a gift from God.

God said my people have committed two great evils, two things they need to repent of. I wonder if we need to repent of these two great evils in our own hearts? I find that these are evils that I need to repent of, not just once, but on a continuing basis. We need to be a repenter, repenting first of the times that we have forsaken Him, the Fountain of Living Waters and we said, "God, You're not enough. I need You plus something else, I need You plus someone else. That's a great evil that needs to be repented of.

Then secondly, when we have made for ourselves substitutes, we've tried to build our own cisterns, our own pots to hold water, to fill our needs, to satisfy our thirsts, we've settled for substitutes for God in our lives, God says that is also a great evil.

If we want to ever get our thirsts satisfied, first we've got to admit that we are thirsty, and we have to come to the place where we identify the wells that we've been going to in an attempt to get our needs met. Identify them as the idols they are. Repent of those idols. Then in our next session, we'll see how we can move forward in getting those needs met, to the one source, the Fountain of Living Waters.

Leslie Basham: That's Nancy Leigh DeMoss helping us identify idols in our lives. She'll be right back to pray with us.

Have the things you've heard this week been helpful to you? We hope that you'll get a copy of our current series on cassette. It's called Satisfying Our Thirst, and it comes on two cassettes for a suggested donation of $8 when you call us at 1-800-569-5959, or visit our Web site ReviveOurHearts.com.

And when you contact us, we hope you'll consider making a financial contribution to this ministry. If God has used this broadcast to speak to you, and you'd like to partner with us as we speak to women about God's Word, you can send a donation to Revive Our Hearts.

Nancy Leigh DeMoss: As we pray right now, would you just identify in your heart to the Lord one or more of the wells that He's brought to your mind as we've been talking about these idols. Name them. Say this is where I run to get my thirsts satisfied. Then ask God to give you a repenter's heart so that you may turn away from idols and turn to Him, the Fountain of Living Waters.

Thank you, Father, that You're a God that says over and over and over again, "Return to Me." Thank you again for that promise of Jesus Who said, "If you knew the gift of God, and Who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked Him and He would have given you a fountain of living waters." Thank you for Jesus Who is that Fountain, Who does deeply and lastingly and eternally quench the deepest thirsts of our hearts. We pray with thanksgiving in Jesus' name. Amen.

Revive Our Hearts with Nancy DeMoss is a ministry partnership of Life Action Ministries.

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