The Feast of Booths was a major celebration in Jesus’ time. It was a joyful harvest festival, thanking God for the fruitfulness and abundance that land had yielded. Paradoxically, Jesus cries out in the temple not about all the plenty, but about lack. He cries out to comfort those who lack, those who are desperately thirsty, in the midst of a celebration of abundance.
Jesus’ words remind us that all the bounty in the world cannot satisfy a thirsty soul. We can have full bellies, but be dying of spiritual thirst. He invites us to come to him in our thirst, trusting that he is the one who refreshes our parched souls. This in itself is a wonderful invitation! But with Jesus, there is always more. As we drink the water he offers, we become abundant rivers of water ourselves. Our hearts become wellsprings of life for the world around us. Jesus’ water is Spirit water, life-giving water for us and for our world.