Read John 4:1-12

v 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.”

This woman must have been pretty shocked to have a Jew make such a request. Her experience of life up to this point had been complicated – she would not have been particularly young if she had already got through 5 husbands and was on the way to number 6. Coming to the well in the heat of the middle of the day seems to indicate that she was not socially accepted in her community – other women would have come earlier when it was cooler and they had an opportunity to gossip a bit. She would undoubtedly have viewed Jesus with some suspicion too; what on earth was a lonely man doing at the well anyway!

And then, right out of the blue, Jesus introduced the notion of ‘Living Water’ – water from a flowing stream. This was a totally bizarre concept in an arid landscape that need a deep well to locate any water at all. She couldn’t make head or tail of it all.

And that is exactly how so many people start on a faith journey – the whole ‘Christian Thing’ is a total mystery. So I learn from Jesus’ response to her. The faith he wants to convey differs hugely from common expectations. Jesus does not ask her to offer herself, or indeed anything that is hers, to God. Look at what he says ‘If only you knew the gift God has for you..

The beginning of faith is not the realisation that we must give something to God – it is grasping the notion that God is offering something to us. It is not God saying ‘Give me your life, … Give me your money, … Give me your time.’ It is the amazing fact that God comes to us offering life itself. Life in all its fullness!


Monday 26th September Daily Notes from The Hub