You stand in the line just to hit a new low… You’re faking a smile with the coffee to go.
The day is hot. Its noon and it’s a scorcher on the edge of a desert. The man finds rest near a well, but he has no jar to dip into the deep reservoir.
She sees him there as she makes her way to the well, but she hasn’t time to focus on him or what he is doing here at this hour. She’s painfully made her way here in the heat of the day to avoid being seen by the other town’s women. She’s been frowned upon by them for many years now.
Then he asks, “Will you give me a drink?”
She wonders just how thirsty a Jewish man must become to lower himself to speak to a Samaritan woman. Knowing the hatred between his people and hers, she inquires, “You’re asking me to get you a drink?”
It’s his next words that gather her interest, “Yes, I did. But really you should be asking me for a drink. What I offer will quench your thirst forever.”
The woman looks around curiously. No, he has nothing to draw water with. She counters, “Sir, our father Jacob in his greatness gave us this well, but even he needed something to dip with.”
As he sips from the jar she hands him, he shares, “The water is really good, but everyone who drinks it is going to get thirsty again. The water I give will become in the one who drinks it a spring welling up to eternal life.”
He now has her full attention. She doesn’t know how, but if what he offers is true, she must have it.
C’mon you little fighter
And get back up again
Oh get back up again
Fill your heart again…
The barriers Jesus is desirous to cross… In this simple story, He crosses cultural, gender, racial, and moral barriers that would have caused any good Pharisee to blush, or more likely rage with anger. And to us, He says, “Follow Me.”
The man knows her needs. He can tell by the enthusiasm in her voice, “Give me this water!” It’s then that he seeks to carry the conversation to a revealing level with the words, “Go and get your husband.” She would rather run now. She resists the urge to flee though and with half-heartedness declares, “I have no husband.”
Before he even speaks, she thinks she knows that he knows. She’s been searching for living water all of her life. One husband, two husbands, a third, fourth, and even a fifth… no living water to be found there. Now she’s resorted to just living with a man who lets her stay under his roof, for a cost of course. With her every decision she believed ‘this was the one that will bring meaning and fulfillment’; none ever did. Her life is empty. She thirsts.
We’re not all that different from this woman, are we? With the next raise, I’ll be content. If I can just get that home… that new car, college degree, latest device, wife, husband. Searching for what will quench that thirst permanently is a never-ending journey, isn’t it?
She remembers. She remembers what’s been passed down by her ancestors for generation after generation. She confronts the man, “When the promised Messiah comes, He’s going to tell us all of these things. He’ll tell us how life can be meaningful and how we can stop being eaten alive by our pursuits that always abandon us and leave us thirsty again.”
Then Jesus said, “I Am the One you long for.”
- Adulterous Samaritan Woman Marries Five Times, Gets a Bum Rap (beholdwriter.wordpress.com)
- Where Then Do You Get That Living Water? (mrbnd.wordpress.com)
- John 4:39-42: Many Samaritans Believe (imerisiarhema.wordpress.com)
- Give Me a Drink (mrbnd.wordpress.com)