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Well Water & Eternal Water
by Elaine Pierce
The woman at the well was so moved by what Jesus revealed to her that, in her rush to return to the village to tell others, she left her water jar at the well: "Come, see a man who told me everything I ever did. Could this be the Christ?" (v. 29). As a result of her first-hand account, the Samaritans urged Jesus to stay with them longer. And what happened during his two-day visit? Many became believers. They believed, not just because of the woman's compelling testimony, but "now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world." (v. 42).
Why do you believe in Jesus? Is it because others have told you about him? That is certainly the way my faith began. My parents took me to church with them, and I grew up hearing Bible stories, singing Bible songs, and participating in Vacation Bible School, Sunday School, and summer church camp.
I knew a lot about Jesus.....but I didn't really know him until college. I remember very clearly when I realized that Jesus died, not just for the world in general, but for me - Elaine Pierce - a sinner, completely undeserving of his grace and yet completely forgiven and loved for all eternity.
Jesus surprised the woman at the well right from the start by asking her, a Samaritan, to give him, a Jew, some water. Jews and Samaritans were enemies and rarely spoke. He continued to surprise her by talking about 'living water.' She thought she knew something about her faith, and the differences between Jews and Samaritans (see v. 19-20), but she was missing the point, as we so often do when we encounter Jesus. She thought she was getting access to a magical, unending water supply, but Jesus was talking about something far greater. The water he offered 'will become a spring of water welling up to eternal life.' (v. 13).
Eternal life! It is almost without comprehension, isn't it? And Jesus offers this to a disgraced woman who was also a Samaritan, a people reviled by the Jews. The woman at the well certainly did not have her act together. Jesus didn't wait until she was good enough to offer her eternal life. He told her that everyone who worships in spirit and in truth will receive this gift. No, we can't earn it. There are no hoops we can jump through that will guarantee the living water he offers so freely.
Take a few minutes to listen to this song, and allow Jesus' words to sink deep into your soul. He is offering you that living water, too. Drink deeply.
Dear Lord, you are offering me living water, eternal life, and so often I settle for crumbs. Thank you for this gift, offered freely, and help me to live a life that celebrates you, that shares the truth and the life freely with others, and that longs to serve you. In Jesus' precious name, Amen.