Lent is a season of reflection, challenge, and encounter. Not only do we look to Jesus, but we look to Him in this season to prepare our hearts for Holy Week. We are to take the time, to force ourselves to look at the true state of our lives and hearts. It is a season to become re-acquainted with the sin-nature we have been delivered from. To remember the fragility of life, it is but a vapor.
Have you ever been in a situation where nothing seemed to satisfy or meet you need? Physical, Mental, Emotional…? Have you ever felt dead on the inside? Have you ever felt like you would do anything to just hear ‘I Love You’ regardless if the person meant it or not? There is a peculiar reality that we all have been acquainted with, the human condition.
We have been created to love and be loved. We have been wired to need physical affection, loving kindness, friendship, relationship…It is who we are at our very deepest depth, you cannot deny it forever, it will eventually consume you.
The need to have these areas satisfied can drive a person to do many things they ‘normally’ would not do.
Allow yourself to feel that reality.
If we forget where we have come from, we miss out on something very important, that first realization that there is someone to not only satisfy, but forgive for all the things you did to try to be filled. We must not stay in that place, but we must never forget.
Place yourself in the shoes of the Samaritan woman, the one Jesus met out by Jacobs well in the middle of the day…
6 Jacob’s well was there; and Jesus, tired from the long walk, sat wearily beside the well about noontime.
7 Soon a Samaritan woman came to draw water, and Jesus said to her, “Please give me a drink.”
8 He was alone at the time because his disciples had gone into the village to buy some food.
9 The woman was surprised, for Jews refuse to have anything to do with Samaritans. She said to Jesus, “You are a Jew, and I am a Samaritan woman. Why are you asking me for a drink?” – John 4:6-9 NLT
This is one of the things I LOVE about Jesus! He does not care about social or cultural norms! Do you really think Jesus needed someone to get water for Him? I think yes and no, remember He gave up Heaven to come to Earth, He was completely dependant on the Father! So did he need someone to draw water for him, yes. But what I love is that Jesus saw an opportunity to encounter a woman in desperate need!
10 Jesus replied, “If you only knew the gift God has for you and who you are speaking to, you would ask me, and I would give you living water.”
11 “But sir, you don’t have a rope or a bucket,” she said, “and this well is very deep. Where would you get this living water? 12 And besides, do you think you’re greater than our ancestor Jacob, who gave us this well? How can you offer better water than he and his sons and his animals enjoyed?” – John 4:10-12 NLT
In life we can get so busy doing, that we forget to open our eyes and see Jesus in front of us. I can imagine her starting to be sarcastic to Jesus, “Really!? You think you are greater than Jacob? He gave us this well…how can you say, you have something better!?”
13 Jesus replied, “Anyone who drinks this water will soon become thirsty again. 14 But those who drink the water I give will never be thirsty again. It becomes a fresh, bubbling spring within them, giving them eternal life.”
15 “Please, sir,” the woman said, “give me this water! Then I’ll never be thirsty again, and I won’t have to come here to get water.” – John 4:13-15 NLT
Jesus does care about physical realities, but He is extremely concerned about our hearts! He is trying to transition the conversation to what is really going on! I wonder how many times we are just as oblivious…how many times has He tried to get my attention regarding my heart, and I am so consumed with my current situation I can’t hear what He is really saying…I only hear what I think He has said…
Jesus has a way of getting our attention:
16 “Go and get your husband,” Jesus told her.
17 “I don’t have a husband,” the woman replied. Jesus said, “You’re right! You don’t have a husband– 18 for you have had five husbands, and you aren’t even married to the man you’re living with now. You certainly spoke the truth!”
19 “Sir,” the woman said, “you must be a prophet. … 26 Then Jesus told her, “I AM the Messiah!”
27 Just then his disciples came back. They were shocked to find him talking to a woman, but none of them had the nerve to ask, “What do you want with her?” or “Why are you talking to her?”
28 The woman left her water jar beside the well and ran back to the village, telling everyone, – John 4:16-19, 26-28 NLT
I Love this story! Jesus really does know what is going on in our lives, we cannot hide it from Him. He knows exactly what to say, and when to say it. Did you notice that no where does it say, “The Woman felt condemned” or “The woman felt rejected”? Absolutely not! This is the heart of Jesus, he reaches out to satisfy a need! Not just a physical need, but a deep deep down need…the need of salvation from life and poor choices.
29 “Come and see a man who told me everything I ever did! Could he possibly be the Messiah?” 30 So the people came streaming from the village to see him.
31 Meanwhile, the disciples were urging Jesus, “Rabbi, eat something.” 32 But Jesus replied, “I have a kind of food you know nothing about.” 33 “Did someone bring him food while we were gone?” the disciples asked each other.
34 Then Jesus explained: “My nourishment comes from doing the will of God, who sent me, and from finishing his work. – John 4:29-34 NLT
The most powerful story you can tell is your own story! Sharing what Jesus has done in your life, not just given you salvation from sin and death, but what He has done in your life, will inspire and provoke others!
Jesus wants to encounter your heart! Just like this woman, there is hope! There is hope of a brighter day! Allow yourself to become still, allow yourself to become acquainted with the true state your heart is in…He will come, He will speak, He will refresh you!
This is a song by Jason Upton called In The Silence please take the time to listen, let it become your prayer! Oh that you would hear Him in the Silence!
Tired of telling you, you have me When I know you really don't Tired of telling you I'll follow When I know I really won't 'Cause I'd rather stand here speechless With no great words to say If my silence is more truthful And my ears can hear how to walk in your way In the silence you are speaking In the quiet I can feel the fire And it's burning, burning deeply burning all that it is That you desire to be silent, in me Oh Jesus, can You hear me? My soul is screaming out And my broken will cries teach me What your Kingdom's all about Unite my heart to fear you To fear your holy name And create a life of worship In the spirit and truth of your loving ways