Thursday, January 21, 2010

Living Water

The woman said to him, “Sir, you have nothing to draw water with, and the well is deep. Where do you get that living water? Are you greater than our father Jacob? He gave us the well and drank from it himself, as did his sons and his livestock.” Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again,but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water, so that I will not be thirsty or have to come here to draw water.” John 4:11-15

Water moves. Any one who lives near an ocean or a river knows that the water is in motion and constantly changing. Water moves with tides, with the rotation of the earth and with the cycles of the moon. It is different in winter than in spring, fall or summer. Wind can make it dance and fly. Cold can make it slow, then hard and it will freeze, even salt water will freeze. And it will thaw again. In the north water can become winter roads shaving hours off summer's traveling time. Water cleans us, refreshes us, challenges us, entertains us and can frighten and trouble us. When there is trouble on the water, entire communities are effected. And without water, none of us can survive. Water is a valuable commodity. For most life forms on this earth, without water, we will die.

Jesus talks with a woman at a well. They are enemies in the eyes of their cultures and religious traditions. He asks her for something to drink - a simple enough request - which begins one of the most profound conversations in the Gospels. Jesus is talking with a woman about the profound and life giving nature of God. God who is not bound by human traditions, societal norms, nor the rules of any given polite society. A loving God, who, poured out like water for us all, is ready and willing to give and renew life to every person. A God who is not frozen in time but living and true. A God who is willing to have profound conversations with people at the margins, and who gives prominence to the outcasts, the poor and the marginalized among us.

Today, I want to remember that Jesus is standing at the well, ready to give living water. No matter how drained and exhausted I may be, Christ is willing. No matter how out of the loop, dropped from the club, broken or in pain I might be, Christ is ready and willing to bring healing, restoration and life. All I need do is come to the well. May we all have courage today to seek the living waters of the well of God. May we seek love, renewing courage and life abundant. No matter what happened yesterday, may we trust God today to bring us living water and new abundant life today.

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