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Mike Riehls
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October 04, 2012
Pastor's Corner by Rev. Jim Rizer

Psalm 23 The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.He makes me lie down in green pastures;He leads me beside still waters;He restores my soul.As incredible as it is that God cares for our daily needs with His ample provision and gift of peace, we realize that as the Psalm continues God wants to do so much more for us. God wants to restore our soul. In addition to daily bread which nourishes the body, the Good Shepherd is actively reaching out to us to heal the wound and scars deep within.In John 4 we get at glimpse of this as Jesus meets the woman at the well. The woman, an outcast in her community, comes to draw water in the heat of the day when no one else will be there. She comes to satisfy her physical thirst when she discovers Jesus at the well. As the conversation develop Jesus offers her “living water” that will allow her to “never thirst again.” (John 6:10-14) He acknowledges she will be physically thirsty as He points to the thirst that marks her soul. She thirsts for acceptance. She longs to be more than the sum of her mistakes and bad choices. She thirsts for wholeness. She longs for her soul to be restored.Are you thirsty not only for still waters, but for the living water, for a restored soul, for wholeness? The Old Testament concept of shalom, often translated as “peace,” is best understood as wholeness. The image frequently used to describe this was a wheel where all the spokes are the right length so the wheel, the life, can roll properly. When some of the spokes are broken or short, life doesn’t roll quite right. Jesus knowing the fullness of her brokenness and the stunted or damaged areas of her soul offers her living water to satisfy her thirst and restore her soul.Are you thirsty? Jesus invites you “Whoever comes to me will never be hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.” (John 6:35) Rizer is minister at Grosse Pointe Woods Presbyterian Church.

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