Jn 4:5-42 Digging In or Digging Deeper
In those days, in their thirst for water, the people grumbled against Moses. Saying “Why did you ever make us leave Egypt... Is the LORD with us or not?”
A demanding people they are. A demanding people we are. We grumble, mumble, complain, accuse, shout and scream not only at God but also at all the people who love us! We grab the gift of our freedom, but we’re not exactly sure what to do with it. It never dawned on these Jews to take a shovel and start digging for water. Everything, everything had to be given to them. Everything had to be easy, at surface level. We know that God does not operate on the surface, but prefers to work deep into the soil (soul). It is for this reason that it took forty years for them to get out of the desert and into the Promised Land. Not a single adult that left Egypt entered the Promised Land alive. They tried sliding their way into Paradise and ended up digging their own graves.
Have I come to realize that freedom is not enough? That a goal, a dream, a vision is not enough? Is bread enough to live on? No. Is water simply H2O? No. It is much more. There is much more here than meets the eye: “If you only knew the gift of God.”
An obscure woman, a Samaritan woman, begins a forbidden dialogue with a man, a Jew, as she draws near to Jacob’s well. “How can you, a Jew, ask me, a Samaritan, for water?” The Lord’s reply is truly divine, “If you only knew the gift of God and who is saying to you, give me a drink, you would ask him and he would give you living water.” The open well is similar to the open tomb: deep, refreshing, life sustaining and life changing! Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews, will no longer be just a man, a Jew, a mystery.
Whereas the Jews are completely closed to discussion, the Samaritan woman is very much open to dialogue, to learn, to understand and to appreciate this chance encounter with an obscure but fascinating Jew. The open well is similar to the open tomb, which is similar to her open heart, “If today you hear his voice, harden not your hearts.” (Ps 95:8) Read and meditate on the dialogue. It is not an easy one. Many of her faults are exposed. And yet, she does not recoil in what the Lord has to say. She is not married, and she knows it. In fact, the fifth man she is living with is not her husband. She can call it whatever she wants, but it is not a marriage. The real miracle is her power to stay humble. Instead of getting upset or walking away, she prefers to dig deeper. The Lord’s words are sharp and true. He has invited her to taste living water that surges from Jacob’s well. This well exists for only one purpose: His purpose, which is our purpose.
The Samaritan woman drops her water jug, the original reason for being at the well, and goes into town to tell the people who she has seen and heard. By allowing the Lord to dig into her life, she has discovered her deepest desire in life: a purpose. Her mission is very similar to our mission: to dig deeper, cost whatever it costs, and to go out and to proclaim the marvelous words and deeds of Jesus Christ and what he has done for us.
An open well lead her to the open tomb because she had an open heart. This is all it takes to encounter the Lord of Life. Open your hearts to Him today!
Peace will reign within our hearts only when we have come to realize that Jesus is LORD, through whom we have gained access by faith to this grace in which we stand, and we boast in hope of the glory of God. (Rom 5:1-2)