“A woman of Samaria came to draw water,” and from that point on her life, her world, was turned upside down. As we continue our Lenten walk with the Lord (19 down and 21 days remaining) we should pray for such a complete conversion such as this Samaritan woman experienced at Jacob’s well.
For the woman at the well, in a way, this was how her “Lenten experience and encounter with the Lord” rolled out:
- Jesus slowly but surely made his way into her heart in spite of the fact that by cultural morés he shouldn’t even have been speaking to her;
- he was stunned by the complete and intimate knowledge Jesus had of her;
- she was at first incredulous of Jesus’ claim to offer “living” water, but then became exhilarated at the promise of eternal life;
- she felt compelled to go out and “tell the good news” to all whom she met and to invite them “to come and see”;
- and, finally, she was moved to ask herself and others, “Could he be the Christ?”
(In other words, she had a crash course in Disciple School.)
If I were giving a retreat to a bunch of incredulous people or—worse—a bunch of lukewarm and reluctant followers, I could not hope for a better movement of the heart, enlightenment of the mind, or a better outcome of desire to go forth and proclaim the reign of God. Please, Lord, that my own Lent 2014 will have even a meager portion of the Samaritan woman’s encounter with the Savior!
Has any experience in your life with Jesus been comparable to the Samaritan woman’s experience—such a complete “winning over,” such a “turning-your-world-upside-down” encounter? If so, have you unbelievably lost sight of it or do you still draw from it? Are you perhaps still waiting for it to happen for the first time?
One thing is for sure: for such a complete Lenten conversion experience, figuratively, we have to first decide to go to the well and THEN, it wouldn’t hurt if we were very thirsty upon arrival.