Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Cool water on a hot day

John 4:6: “Now Jacob's well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied from His journey, sat thus by the well. It was about the sixth hour. 7 A woman of Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, ‘Give Me a drink.’ 8 For His disciples had gone away into the city to buy food. 9 Then the woman of Samaria said to Him, ‘How is it that You, being a Jew, ask a drink from me, a Samaritan woman?’ For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans. 10 Jesus answered and said to her, ‘If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, 'Give Me a drink,' you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.’"

Jesus has an uncanny knack for finding sinners in need of a savior. No respectable woman would draw water at noonday. Traditionally, women would draw water in the morning and evening. This woman did not associate with the other women in the town, most likely because of her reputation. She was part of a hated, mixed-breed that Jews despised. With these conditions, no Jew would ever ask her for help. However, Jesus starts a conversation with this woman whom many would not even be caught dead acknowledging. Nevertheless, Jesus sees the woman for who she really is, a precious soul who just needs to hear the truth. Jesus was on a Journey and weary from traveling. The sun was set high in the sky, so He rested. When he saw this woman He asked for a drink of water. Jesus used a simple conversation to speak to a profound truth.

What could be more basic then a cool cup of water on a hot sunny day. We understand thirst, the desire to quench our physical need. On a hot day, weary from walking, quenching one’s thirst is fundamental. Jesus used this opportunity to expose the woman’s true thirst. Jesus reached out to this woman in a few ways. It was lewd and controversial to speak to a woman on the street, even your own wife. So speaking to a stranger, especially one with such a reputation was truly a scandal. Nevertheless, Jesus did not stand on tradition. He saw this woman’s need and her true thirst, and offered her the true living water. Her response was reasonable, for she said, "How is it that you, being a Jew, ask a drink from me, a Samaritan woman?" She was asking what is it that compels you to approach me, a non-approachable? Jesus’ response is truly remarkable, He said, “if you only knew the gift that God wants to give to you, then you would have sought me out”.

As Christ followers we may have an opportunity to approach a non-approachable individual, or to have a chance to offer a cold cup of water to a parched soul today. We may have the chance to speak and show love to a person so locked into his or her own sin that they cannot see any joy in this world. Jesus stopped on His journey and took time to minister to and reach out to a soul that was precious in the sight of God. When His disciples came back they said, “We got the food” and Jesus’ reply was “I have food you know nothing about.” Why did He say that? Because, our soul is satisfied when we are doing God’s work and truly ministering to those in need. I challenge you today to offer some Living Water to a thirsty soul, and see if God will not feed your soul in the process.

Tomorrows Readings:
Old Testament: 11 Kings 6-8 New Testament John 4:31-54

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