This past Sunday the passage of scripture that my community read thru was from John chapter 4.
It is one of my all time favorite Bible stories, and certainly one of the most meaningful things that Jesus ever did while he was here on earth.
You might think that talking to a woman at a well pales in comparison to everything else he did while he was here, but you would be SO wrong.
Let me tell ya why you would be OH SO wrong.
It is true, he did so many miracles while he was here.
Let me just list a few off the top of my head;
He fed thousands from one loaf of bread and a fish.
He raised Lazarus, one of his best buddy's who had been not "mostly dead" but DEAD, dead! He was stinky and wrapped in mummy attire for days, and with a word he came out and had a party with his sisters.
And then of course there was the whole raising himself from the dead and walking around, (not like "The Walking Dead") for 40 days as fully ALIVE and fully WELL.
This and so much more is why he has so many followers, and why ALOT of the world has come to know him as the One True LIVING God, but the stories like what I find in John chapter 4 are what draw me back to his feet in total, utter, love, and adoration.
I think it's because this story speaks to the heart of every person who is broken and in need of true love.
Can you tell me of one person who isn't in NEED of true love?
The story in John chapter 4 is about a woman, who came to a water well to fill her empty bucket.
What she left with was not only a very full soul, but her eyes were opened to see the Lover of her Soul.
Her whole life she had been searching to fill this void that she had.
The bible says she tried to fill that void 5 times over, with 5 different husbands, but nothing and no one could take the place that Jesus would.
She was broken.
Can you tell me one person who isn't broken ?
I absolutely love that every time I read this story I get something new from it.
There are angles and sides to every story we all know this to be true.
Ask any divorced couple to tell you their version of what went wrong and often times you get two completely different stories.
The same is true of the stories in scripture.
This is why I believe it is said in Hebrews that the scriptures are alive and active.
WE (with the help of the Holy Spirit) make them come alive when we read them and share them with others, because each of us see something different.
We question different things.
We interpret words and the meaning of those words different.
We have different passions and interests that cause us to see the world and all that is in it so differently.
I absolutely LOVE that about reading the bible with other people.
Did you know that is the way it was always intended to be read?
So this Sunday the angle on this scripture came from a bro in Christ named Matthew.
He talked about the significance of the fact that most Jews didn't even travel thru Samaria.
They would take a different road that took them way outside of where they were trying to get to, all to avoid the town of Samaria. We are talking DAYS out of the way.
Most Jews thought of Samaria as the ghetto if you will, and would take great lengths to avoid passing thru there. The reason was because Samariatans had become front runners. They followed Judaism only when it benefited them, otherwise they went with the popular party at hand.
I had never really thought about how significant this road trip was for Jesus and his disciples until Matt broke it down like that and it gave a whole new angle to the story.
We all know that for Jesus to be speaking to a woman was unheard of for that day and age, but to have even traveled to Samaria was a bold move on his part. I'm sure the disciples begged and pleaded to go around the ghetto streets of Samaria, but the scriptures say, "He had to go".
Because he knew that not only was there going to be a conversation with a broken, thirsty woman at the well, but a whole town that he would proceed to hang out in for 2 whole days would come to know the LOVE of God in a way that they had never experienced before.
And that is why this story is significant, beyond what may appear to be just a simple conversation.
Jesus was breaking down prejudices.
Jesus was establishing a kingdom with a foundation built on nothing less than love.
Jesus wouldn't be persuaded to take a different path.
His way, is THE only way, and that is the Way of LOVE.
Above all titles, genders, races, ....
HE IS ABOUT LOVE
If anyone tells you different they are preaching a different gospel.