“I thirst' said Jesus after He had been scourged, forced to carry the cross to Calvary, and was nailed to it for hours.
Jesus was obviously physically thirsty, however, it’s much more than a bodily thirst that Christ speaks of. He thirsts for you and I. Christ thirsts to love us, and be loved by us.
Our world uses the word “love” all the time. So much so, that it has almost lost it’s meaning. But Jesus doesn’t say “I love you” on the cross. He proves it!
Look at the cross from Christ’s perspective. God sends His son Jesus to earth so we may be brought back into relationship with Him. Jesus tells us about God’s great love for us constantly in the Gospels. He shows God’s love by healing the sick and forgiving our sins. He gives us Himself forever in the Eucharist so we may remain in communion with Him forever, remain in love with Him forever.
Once Jesus has done all this, poured out His love so incredibly, we deny Him. We turn down His love in the most horrifying way . . . by putting Him to death.
He accepts it. He embraces it. He hangs on the cross and says, “I thirst.”
This summer I read about Blessed Mother Teresa. At the center of her spirituality were these two words of Jesus: “I thirst.” Her love and devotion to Christ can be summed up in that simple phrase. She understood what Christ meant when He spoke those words.
Jesus says 'I thirst' to you.
“I thirst for you. Yes, that is the only way to even begin to describe My love for you: I THIRST FOR YOU. I thirst to love you and to be loved by you … that is how precious you are to Me. I THIRST FOR YOU. Come to Me and I will fill your heart and heal your wounds. I will make you a new creation and give you peace, even in all your trials. I THIRST FOR YOU. You must never doubt My mercy, My acceptance of you, My desire to forgive, My longing to bless you and live My life in you. I THIRST FOR YOU. If you feel unimportant in the eyes of the world, that matters not at all. For Me, there is no one any more important in the entire world than you. I THIRST FOR YOU. Open to Me, come to Me, thirst for Me, give Me your life – and I will prove to you how important you are to My Heart”
I had never really noticed these words in scripture before, but the depth and reality of what they mean for us became clear as I read about Mother Teresa’s spirituality. The meaning is simple. “Jesus loves us.”
You’ve heard it before. You’ve probably read it on a bumper sticker, or seen it on a billboard, or read it on one of those Facebook like/share guilt trips. Don’t let this simple truth pass you by.
Jesus just wants us to love Him back. He already gave us everything. Let us not continue to leave our God thirsty. Let us satisfy His thirst for our souls by loving Him who not only made us, but died and gave Himself for us.
How will you show Him your love this Holy Week?