Name Tags and Living Water

Living Water“…If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him” (John 7:37b-38). 

Sometimes I doubt the fact that these “streams of living water are flowing from within” me. I don’t often feel like a bubbling brook over-flowing with the Spirit of God, but more like a stagnant pond.  But Jesus says, “Whoever believes in me,” this living water will flow from within him.  So it does flow from within me, whether I feel like it or not.

I recently attended a social event where I felt like a fish-out-of-water. It was clear from the moment of my arrival I did not fit in.  There was certainly a name tag waiting for me there on the table with my name clearly labeled on it, but in that sea of name tags, mine seemed like it belonged on a sandy beach somewhere instead.

As I made my way through clusters of chattering name tags that evening, I tried to rehearse in my mind this Scripture passage about living water that I had meditated upon before my arrival. I knew ahead of time this was unchartered waters for me-meaning I might not know a soul and would have to try to mingle.  I had met the hostess and the honored guest previously, but only briefly, and it is highly unlikely I will be around them much socially in the future anyway.

So there I was meandering in and out those clusters, and watching for anyone to make eye contact with me. I did get the opportunity to speak to the hostess and the honored guest, both beautifully gracious women of prominence in these circles, but they had an entire house filled with name tags to socialize with so I was back to meandering quickly.  Finally, a name tag I recognized!

She was making eye contact with me and ready to make small talk! I had met her before, and immediately we found stuff to chat about.  That lasted for a bit, and then she was grabbed by someone else to chat with.  So off I went on the look-out for new chattering name tags to converse with.  I found two tags with an open posture, and I went for it, interjecting myself into their conversation and asking them questions and listening intently. I did it!  I even got my picture taken while talking with this group, so I may end up on a cover of some publication showing my ability to chatter with previously unknown name tags!

Meeting up again a bit later with my familiar name-tagged partner, she expressed to me that she did not know a soul here. I told her I was in the same boat.  We looked over the sea of name tags together from our vantage point by the front door close to the beautifully adorned table of delectable desserts ,and commiserated a few more minutes before each deciding it was time to go home.  We both expressed our well wishes to the host and the honored guest before exiting into the darkness.

Relief met me on my way to the car, and I realized I might have actually been “living water” to my new name-tagged friend that evening and her “living water” to me. It flows, and I go wherever He leads me!

It is always through grace,   name  tag






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