Last week we talked about how God knows where to find us when we are in trouble. The second person I wanted to talk about was the Samaritan woman by the well. That’s another story where Jesus seemed to “go out of His way” to meet with someone. I used quotes for “go out of His way” because I think to us it seems as though it was out of His way, but in reality, it was where He intended to go.
The Bible puts it this way in John 4:4, “Now he [Jesus] had to go through Samaria.” We can read that text like there was no other way to get to where He was going except through Samaria but geographically it was actually the long way round to get to where He was going. So the language there, speaks more of Jesus’ desire to go through Samaria and not a limitation in options to get to where He was going.
Sometimes we are scared to inconvenience God but what we don’t realise is that what we deem to be an inconvenience to God could actually have been on God’s to do list all along.
Helping His kids is always on God’s list. The woman at the well was in a different situation to the man who was enslaved by the legion of demons. She was struggling in a different area of her life. She had relationship problems, had been married a few times and was now living with a man who wasn’t her husband which was frowned upon. She didn’t even go to the well at the same time as the other ladies so as to avoid people. This could suggest that she didn’t have many friends, if any. But God saw beyond her mistakes, He saw beyond what everyone saw and He saw a need in her. A need for living water.
Thing is this woman was a Samaritan and Jesus was a Jew. The Samaritans and the Jews did not mix (John 4:9). Let alone a Samaritan woman and a Jewish teacher. So it was not only unusual that Jesus chose to go through Samaria, it was unheard of that He did so, so He could meet with the woman. I love how Jesus does unexpected things with the most unlikely people!
Jesus did not let the social norms or the prejudices of the people around Him determine who He should reach out to and He hasn’t changed. John 7:37-38 says, “…Anyone who is thirsty may come to me! Anyone who believes in me may come and drink!…” Those words were spoken by Jesus. He didn’t say, “When you get your life together come to me.” Or, “Any Jews who are thirsty may come to me!” Nah, He said “Anyone” and He meant it. God doesn’t say one thing and mean another. “Anyone” was not limited to the Jews but it extended to the Samaritan woman and it also extends to us today.
The Samaritan woman had been in multiple relationships, could it be that she was spiritually thirsty but she was looking to natural things to distract her from her “issues”? I think so. We all have different areas or things that have happened to us in life that leave us feeling empty in certain areas of our lives or left us with issues. Trust issues, relationship issues, anger issues, rejection issues, money issues, depression… “issues”. We have an open invitation to go drink from the living water. Anything less will only help us feel better momentarily but inevitably, we will feel empty again and the “issues” will keep coming back.
Jesus explained this in John 4:13-14, “Jesus replied, “Anyone who drinks this water [natural water] will soon become thirsty again. But those who drink the water I give will never be thirsty again. It becomes a fresh, bubbling spring within them, giving them eternal life.””
In John 4:10, Jesus said to the woman, “If you only knew who I am and the gift that God wants to give you – you’d ask me for a drink, and I would give you living water.” All the woman had to do was ask. Papa God has a gift that He wants to give to you and me. In John 10:10, Jesus tells us what part of that gift is, “I have come to give you everything in abundance, more than you expect —life in its fullness until you overflow!”
Jesus does not want us running on empty and repeating cycles that ultimately leave us broken and defeated. He wants to give us living water. John 7:37-39 tells us that the living water is the Holy Spirit. For as long as we stay close to the Holy Spirit, He will fill us with life and bring us healing and restoration in those areas where we need God.
When everyone in Samaria looked at the woman, they judged her and thought so little of her. But when Jesus looked at her, He saw a daughter and a mighty evangelist that out of the whole town, He picked her. Furthermore, out of everyone He could have picked, including the Jewish leaders, Jesus chose to reveal Himself as the Messiah to this woman first.
Don’t let your past or what others see in you stop you from drinking from the well that never runs dry. Jesus is that well. Ask Jesus to fill you with living water that you too may experience life in its fulness. We all have “issues” but the answer to those issues is found in Jesus.
Love and blessings,