Friday, January 20, 2012

In Spirit and In Truth

Jesus said to her, “Go, call your husband, and come here.” The woman answered him, “I have no husband.” Jesus said to her, “You are right in saying, ‘I have no husband’; for you have had five husbands, and the one you now have is not your husband. What you have said is true.” The woman said to him, “Sir, I perceive that you are a prophet. Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, but you say that in Jerusalem is the place where people ought to worship.” Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe me, the hour is coming when neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem will you worship the Father. You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, for salvation is from the Jews. But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him. God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.” The woman said to him, “I know that Messiah is coming (he who is called Christ). When he comes, he will tell us all things.” Jesus said to her, “I who speak to you am he.” John 4:16-26

At the holidays this year, we used skype several times to visit with our family members who were not able to be with us, or us with them. We had a small screen and they had a large screen set up in their kitchen and we had a small one set up on a table. It was wonderful to see everyone, but it was hard to hear a large group of people. It was hard to communicate comfortably, even though the technology is so much better than it used to be. There is still a big difference between skype and face to face. The delay and confusion are gone and we understand more completely in person.

The Samaritan woman met Jesus at the well. The one who was long anticipated and talked about was meeting her face to face. Here was the one who had been expected, in the most unexpected place, in the least fancy of circumstances. God met her right where she was, a face to face interaction, while doing her daily task of drawing water. The one who was far off was now face to face. She went from confusion to clarity, from distance to close up, from imagination to reality. God promises to meet us in our humble places, in the midst of our messy daily lives, and is willing to find us in strange lands and alien territories. We are never far off from God, never need a technological vehicle or an interpreter, but God is with us and will make love real and clear.

Today, I ask God to be near this day, in my daily tasks and in my travels, so that I might know my every movement as the walk of worship in spirit and in truth. May God supply confidence and relationships today that confirm God's active presence in our lives so that we may live secure in faith and acting for the love of the world. May differences disappear as God makes us one family in spirit and truth.

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