It’s over. After nearly a year of waiting, it’s finally come and gone. Last year, we bought our younger daughter tickets to see One Direction in concert…this year. We downloaded and listened to music, bought t-shirts, and kept a countdown of the days left. And it finally came, and went. After the concert was over, and it was just me and my daughter in the car, we talked a little. It was a good concert. The video, lights, and fireworks were pretty amazing. The arena was packed, but something was lacking. My daughter told me it was just hard to believe it was all over, and in the afterglow of the night, she also told me that as good as it was, there was something a little unfulfilling about it being finished.
Andrew Peterson (the best songwriter on the planet) uses the phrase, drinking deeply from the shallow well. I think it fits here. What we did last night was fun, entertaining, exhilarating, and in the end left us no fuller than we were when we went. That’s what happens when we drink from shallow wells. They fill us up for the right now, but that kind of water can’t sustain. It will always come up lacking.
Jesus had this same kind of conversation with the Samaritan woman that he met. She’d spent a lifetime drinking from shallow wells. One empty relationship after another had left her empty, dry, and outcast. But on that day, she met a man who offered her living water. Water that once you drank it, you would never be thirsty again. And she drank. And she was satisfied; probably more than satisfied.
It would be easy to assume that I regret taking my daughter to the concert, but I don’t. Shallow water in and of itself isn’t always bad. I mean, I love classic 70’s rock and some great 80’s music. Listening to that stuff energizes me, makes me remember when I was a kid, puts a smile on my face…but it never fills me. It never speaks to my soul. I have to drink the deeper water for that. The danger with shallow water is that we think that if we just keep drinking more of it that somehow this time will different; somehow it will work. It never does.
At the end of the night, we made a memory that we’ll never forget. I saw excitement and joy on my daughter’s face that I wouldn’t trade for the world. And, if we’re being honest, we both learned a little something about shallow water.