“but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” John 4:14 (Jesus)
I had never heard of the word thirst until I became well acquainted with social networking sites. I had always been at a loss when a caption would read “he is thirsty”, “she is thirsty” or “such thirst”; I couldn’t understand why the desire to drink, the longing to be quenched of thirst would be used to berate an individual. I didn’t understand why it would feature underneath a picture with a man or a woman who looked everything but thirsty. There was never anything in the photograph or picture to indicate that this person, when the picture or photograph was taken, had a dry throat. So you can understand my confusion.
However, I am much wiser now (cue 1st Corinthians 13:11 when I was a child, I thought like a child etc.) and have since come to the realisation (with the help of urban dictionary) that thirst in actuality has dual meaning. Rather than simply being a word to describe the feeling you get when you are longing for a drink (my drink of choice would always be a cold Fanta), it can also be used to describe “needy” idiosyncrasies. After perusing urban dictionary, I have selected five of my favourite definitions for your edification and entertainment:
1.Too eager to get something (especially play). Desperate.
2.To crave attention. Trying to talk to the opposite sex (most likely)
3.put on, be chosen,” or simply garner lots of attention.
Examples of people who define “thirsty”:
-That chick at the club trying desperately to get into the VIP section.
-The guy that hits on every last chick in a group of girlfriends.
-The girl or guy whose top goal is to impress other people (this could be dressing a certain way solely to obtain complements, frequenting certain establishments just to be seen there, etc.)
4. To be thirsty, is to over actively: investigate, long for, covet, in some occasions intensely staring, or bold displays of desperation.
5.To be extremely desperate; wanting to be in a relationship really bad.
The first thing that struck me whilst perusing the definitions, was how long ago they had been written. I was under the impression that “thirsty” was a recent phenomenon but I was greatly mistaken. The second thing that stuck out was how widely used the term was. When you have the time to peruse the site for yourself, you will find how consistent and coherent these definitions written, by different people at different times are. Each definition outlines the eagerness ( and borderline desperation) involved in “the thirst”.
The thirst is real.
I want this article to help to alleviate the notions that Christians do not feel or they are exempt from having desires for each other because that notion is inherently flawed and robs Christians of humanity. Christians are not divine (although our ultimate goal is perfection) and therefore placing a divine expectation on them, in the sense that they are not allowed to be human, is definitely unfair. Everybody wants to be wanted and this might potentially be our default position and so “the thirst” amongst Christians (because like I said we are human) is more frequent than we imagine or care to admit.
We have all been there (if you haven’t been there then feel free to skim read). We have all seen a man or woman from a distance (or nearby) and made ourselves that more available because we were eager to make a good impression. Some of us have gone as far as putting ourselves in awkward scenarios to get that Christian Brother or Christian sister to notice us. For instance, some have pretended to accidentally bump into him or her. Some have very weirdly tried to include themselves in a conversation with the person, despite them obviously having and enjoying conversation with other people. Some have joined a Christian fellowship and sat in the most obvious position in the hope that their crush will arrive. I’m not even judging. I am relaying. In fact, I understand. The pool of Christian men is extremely small (a discussion for another article) and so I don’t blame women for floating around the same dark skinned brother , who started attending the church a few weeks back. There are at present, 60 million more men than women in the world and yet women make up a large percentage of the congregation and although this is definitely a topic for another time, I thought it useful to draw attention to it at this juncture in order to show the extent of the issue. Woman want to marry God – fearing and good looking men and so when a man enters the church who fits their criteria, they will flock and even where they don’t flock, they want to know who the brother is. We (at least majority of the single women in the church) all want the same single brother who plays an instrument in the church, or leads the youth because the palette choice is limited. Christian sisters tend to like the same brothers and because they are so few and far in between I can’t even blame them. Given the dearth it is understandable and the Christian thirst becomes real because “everybody wants to be wanted”. This is perhaps one of my favourite examples: A male friend you have been praying for, gives his life to Christ (surrenders his will to Jesus) and as soon as you find out this crucial piece of information, you begin to strategise. I would equate this to thirst.
The males aren’t exonerated. The spotlight was placed on women first because I am women but that shouldn’t be taken to mean that Christian men aren’t thirsty. The church is filled with single women serving the Lord and so for a single man, who is committed to finding that Proverbs 31 queen (I dislike the obsessive emphasis on Proverbs 31 because a lot of these men quoting the scriptural reference are blind to the fact that Christ loved the church and died for her and he is to love like Christ) it is his haven. To an extent obsessively longing for a proverbs 31 woman can be read as thirst. I can’t help but look at such men and internally murmur, “You don’t want a woman, you want an extra-terrestrial being.” The thirst is seen in his approach. I’ve heard of men actively moving from church to church, looking for a gorgeous woman who fits his pre-requisites. In fact I’ve been advised to move to a church where the demographic is young and trendy in the hope to land myself a “good Christian man”.
The thirst could drive you to the God fearing man or woman of your dreams or self –sabotage. A lot of us are using a pursuit of love to mask our co-dependency. Co-dependency is dangerous for many reasons. One such reason is that it is suggestive of a character that lacks self-confidence when God has in fact given us the Spirit of love, power and sound mind (2nd Timothy 1:7). On the other hand, thirst is potentially subjective. Would we deem Ruth’s strategy as “thirst”? Probably not.
Maybe the thirst is paramount. Maybe if displayed, it should be more subtle than obvious. Maybe we should all have shirts that read, “I love Jesus, date me.”
Love Cris x
P.S Water is your friend.