In spirit take up your stand within this woman of Samaria, a woman so hurt by the unforgiveness of others she was completely unaware of her own need for self-forgiveness. The way her life had unfolded, the five lovers, the man she was now with, and the unknown stories that swirled around each of these relationships had left her disappointed and disillusioned with life. The young girl’s romantic desires and heart-filled enthusiasm had been swallowed up by the burden of the life she had had. Can you feel her pain? Experience on every level of your being how she twisted and turned in spirit, trying to find a way to make sense of her life, to make it right, to see how it could be remedied, her life rerun, time running out, the complexity of it all. Now nothing could be changed. What was the use?

To this woman who came to draw water, Jesus, who obviously knew all about her, said simply, “Please give me a drink.” He met her in the place she was. Even when he asked her to call her husband, he required no agreement with his statement that she had had five husbands, and he expected no apology, no expression of guilt, no shame-filled explanation. It was a loving gift of the arrow of truth piercing the wound of a woman who had suffered too long. She who no longer knew the experience of love, of being wanted, known, seen, desired, was brought to life. That was all Jesus wanted.

Merge with this woman’s experience of being “found out” in such a merciful, tender way. What secret are you hiding? What history is no longer able to be fixed in your life? Here Jesus saying aloud your secret. Stand there before him as he looks at you and says, “I know. I know it all.” He wants to become a living fountain within you. Your life, flowing with grace and mercy. He wants to send you running to the world to tell everyone the mercy you’ve experienced. He wants to see you happy. Nowhere in the Gospels does Jesus demand people to grovel at his feet. Instead he throws a party when a person enters into a relationship with him and his loving truthful gaze can pierce their pain and set them free.

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