Meditation is an ideal way to pray. Using God's word (Lectio Divina) allows me to hear, listen and reflect on what the Lord wants to say to me - to one of his disciples - just like He did two thousand years ago.
The best time to reflect is at the beginning of the day and for at least 15 to 30 minutes.
Prior to going to sleep, read the Mass readings for the next day and then, in the morning, reflect on the Meditation offered on this website.
I hope these daily meditations allow you to know, love and imitate the Lord in a more meaningful way.
God bless you!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Jn 4:5-42 Digging In or Digging Deeper

Jn 4:5-42 Digging In or Digging Deeper

(Click here for readings)

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)


  1. I never really paid attention to the part of this gospel where Jesus asks the woman about her husband because I thought there was no connection to me. But during the homily last night the priest mentioned that those men represent the things in our lives that we have tried to make us happy, to satiate this thirst that we all have.

    It may be people or things (money, power, control, sex, etc). When this person or thing doesn’t quench our thirst, we try even harder to make them love us, or gain more wealth, work longer hours, etc. We become obsessed, addicted; we fall into sin.

    The person we want to desperately love us can never satisfy this thirst because they are finite, broken; just as we are and only God’s love is infinite, perfect and able to satiate this thirst. It is only then that we will find peace.

    My throat is parched, here in my desert of loneliness. I see a man ahead handing out cups of water to those gathered around him. I stagger to him, hoping for a cup of water to quench my thirst but the cistern is empty when I arrive. I beg him for just a drop but he tells me he has no more and turns away. I cry out but have no voice, weep but have no tears. I become desperate and begin my search again.

    When I no longer have the strength to move I fall to my knees and am still. I turn my gaze upward and begin to feel the gentle drops of God’s love for me. He refreshes my soul. I have a voice and cry out in praise and thanksgiving. I cry tears of joy that my God has not abandoned me even though I have abandoned Him.

    Dear heavenly Father,
    Give me the courage to run to you and receive your life-giving water that you offer to each of us freely. Help me to quit spinning my wheels trying to quench my thirst with things of this world. Amen.

  2. “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.”

    I find it so interesting the way the woman listens to Jesus tell her, her sins and she listens without trying to justify or make excuses. I don't have the humility to do that.

    In my job many people come to me with their problems, they share very personal and intimate things with me, they humble themselves in front of me and I listen. They feel better when they leave.

    The only person I'm completely honest with is my confessor. I do not trust anyone enough to share the truth about myself with. Those people who come see me think I have it all together, but I don't. If they only knew.

    Yes I am surrounded by people most of the time and it seems like I have lots of friends, but I don't. If they only knew.

    I even allow some to get close to me, but I don't get close to them. It's easier that way, easier for me. I know their secrets, they don't know mine. I control the relationship that way. If they only knew.

    Sometimes I let them get too close, I let them get past the barbed wire around my heart and when that happens, I switch on the high voltage electric fence. And that puts an end to it. I don't have to do anything but avoid them, their calls, their emails, their texts. I just wait it out. They go away. If they only knew.

    I am very lonely. I don't know how to have an intimate relationship with anyone. I guess because I'm not willing to humble myself and be real. The ironic thing is that they think I am. I have them fooled. The only ones that know the truth are the ones that have gone away. If they only knew.

    Being humble and allowing people to see the truth about you, is too painful for someone like me who's filled with so much pride that it makes me physically ill to even think about the truth coming out about me. If they only knew.

    I know the Lord can see into my soul, past my sins. I rely on His mercy to forgive me, and he does. But I'm so lonely.

    I'm not humble enough to allow anyone else to see the truth about me. So I guess in the meantime I will have to keep up the pretenses and the shallow relationships that are constantly turning over. If they only knew.

    I guess I have to be okay with that until I can humble myself, take down the barrier around my heart and risk the truth getting out. That I am lonely, I can give advice and direction all day long but I can't take it. I can tell others what's wrong with them, but I'm not willing to hear what's wrong with me. I can put a smile on my face when I face the ones I've sent away. I can stay busy so I don't have time to feel the loneliness, but I really can't get away from it. If they only knew.

    Maybe one day, I'll face it and take my mask off and be real............. But that day is not today.

    I am sorry that I've hurt so many people and that I continue to hurt more. I just don't know how to have a healthy relationship and when one comes close, I get scared and push them away. The really bad thing is, I never take responsibility. I have the ability to always make them believe it is their fault. If they only knew.

    It's time to go to bed, so I can get up in the morning and put my happy, I'm your friend face on and do my job. If they only knew.

  3. Father,
    I invited my 18 year old niece to mass yesterday to hear you. She has not heard too many homilies, or maybe 'received' many homilies. The pastor at the parish where she will be received into the Church on Easter is like listening to a 'sweet' Ben Stein. She stayed awake the whole time and I'm pretty sure she actually learned something. I was a little nervous because the last time I invited her to hear you, it turned out to be 'Deacon Day' for homilies. But it turned out perfect. You rocked the house last night at St. Ann! Thank you, I've been a little afraid that maybe she's getting the 'lesson/rules' but missing the Gospel.(like I did for a long time)

  4. Father,

    Great Meditation! Made me think...

    I need to want more than is on the surface. Our faith is so rich, so full of precious stones that are hidden under the surface. It will require a little digging for me to reach and strike it rich!

    “If you only knew the gift of God.”

    Again, this requires work, effort on my part to fully enjoy and appreciate the gift of God and all of the blessings He has given to me. I need to stop making excuses and being so sloth!

    Thank You for making me think and reflect!

    Your homily last night was especially good! They are almost always great but we all thought it was excellent!

    God Bless,



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