Friday 29 July 2022

John 4:16-26

16 He told her, “Go, call your husband and come back.” 17 “I have no husband,” she replied. Jesus said to her, “You are right when you say you have no husband. 18 The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have just said is quite true.” 19 “Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet. 20 Our ancestors worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.” 21 “Woman,” Jesus replied, “believe me, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. 22 You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. 23 Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. 24 God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.” 25 The woman said, “I know that Messiah” (called Christ) “is coming. When he comes, he will explain everything to us.” 26 Then Jesus declared, “I, the one speaking to you—I am he.”

What an incredible moment when Jesus brought acceptance and grace to a lady his culture dictated he should have ignored. A woman whose life story to that moment was one of rejection and failure – whose self-esteem and self-worth were likely pretty low. Not surprisingly she too longed for the Messiah, a Saviour.

Many people today are longing for acceptance, for belonging and value for their lives. I believe Jesus is the answer.

Jesus’ acceptance is like quenching a thirst, forever. The struggle to go on, to keep it together is gone. The body, mind and spirit are refreshed and revived by his love and forgiveness, as we live with God as our Lord and Saviour.

When Jesus identified himself as God for the first time it was to this woman. The famous words “I am he” would not have been lost on her, recalling the name God of the Old Testament gave himself – “I am.” But Jesus goes on to define God in terms of The Spirit as well. He is infinite, eternal, not limited in time or location. The Holy Spirit is available for everyone.

To worship in The Spirit means living with the Holy Spirit in me, showing me the truth of God and of my own heart – John 16. I worship God the Father and Son through The Spirit, despite my feelings, anxieties and even when I do not see answers to my prayers. Even when, like the woman at the well, or Paul and Silas in prison (Acts 16:25), my circumstances do not make me want to thank God, I worship him with thankfulness because of who he is and who I have seen him to be in my life- faithful, forgiving, worthy of my gratitude.

Dear Lord Jesus thank you for revealing God to me. Thank you for meeting me like you did the woman at the well, unconditionally. Give me an opportunity this week to share this beautiful story of acceptance and grace with someone who does not know you. Amen

Written by Claire Moore

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