Thought for the Day : Thursday 26 November

Thought for the Day by Tim Ward (St Chad’s)

Readings: Isaiah 41:8-20 and Revelation 16:12-21

In Chapter 41 of the book of Isaiah, the LORD gives assurance to Israel.  In verses 17 to 20 God promises to answer their prayer for water.  This is an excerpt, (taken from the Good News Bible)

“When my people in their need look for water,
when their throats are dry with thirst,
then I, the LORD, will answer their prayer;
I, the God of Israel, will never abandon them.
I will make rivers flow among barren hills
And springs of water run in the valleys.
I will turn the desert into pools of water
And the dry land into flowing springs.

Isaiah 41:17-20

By constructing and maintaining reservoirs, irrigation and mains water systems water engineers throughout the world have fulfilled this vision for many..Locally, for example, we benefit from the reservoirs of West and North Yorkshire, including Eccup Reservoir which dates from 1843.

But drought, flood, and economic systems, restrict access to water supplies.  This was the backstory to the James Bond film Quantum of Solace. Water as the most precious resource, was the means to power in a fictionalised South America, and so the villain made the pipelines run dry, the people go thirsty.  The bad guy “businessman” Dominic Greene reverses the prophecy and turns pools of water into desert.

While the film draws on truth in alluding to actual battles over the privatisation of water supplies, and the impact of low rainfall, it still trades on the fictional notion of the dashing individual saviour redeeming all.

But we cannot rely on our comic-book or Hollywood heroes to make real the vision of “turning dry lands into flowing springs”. Nor can we simply wait for God alone to put everything right. Rather, we remember those who built and maintain reservoirs, irrigation and sanitation systems.  We remember that water is a public resource. And despite our weaknesses, we remember our prayerful human endeavour is to play a part in turning these verses into reality.

This animation is from Christian Aid in 2014 encourages us to keep going, to adapt, to help each other, to help water flow.

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