Anglican Morning Devotion for 16 May 2021 Anno domini
A ministry of the Anglican Orthodox Communion Worldwide
“Then cometh he to a city of Samaria, which is called Sychar, near to the parcel of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph. 6Now Jacob’s well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied with his journey, sat thus on the well: and it was about the sixth hour. 7There cometh a woman of Samaria to draw water: Jesus saith unto her, Give me to drink.” (John 4:5-7; KJV)
Our Lord Jesus Christ is, Himself, the Fountain of Living Waters. He was that Rock of Horeb that gushed forth a flood of water during the wilderness journey of the children of Israel (see 1 Cor 10:4). Most often He is found where we do not seek Him for He most often seeks His own in unsuspected places such as the Jacob’s Well outside the gates of Sychar, in the wilderness of Beersheba for Hagar, at an empty tomb for Mary Magdalene, or on the road to Emmaus for two disciples forlorn of hope. In every case, Our Lord was not present at those places for the sake of satisfying an aesthetic desire – He was at each place because He had an appointment with those who were at those places – and in each case, it was unbeknownst to the person being visited. We never know when our Lord may visit us in our sorrows and weaknesses.
There was a woman of whom the Lord was fully aware who came to Jacob’s Well daily at the noonday hour to avoid the wagging tongues of the ‘more decent’ women of the village at Sychar. She was a woman of ill repute when she came to the Well that day. She was a known adulteress whose sins were an open book to all who dwelled in the city. It was unlikely that her life would ever change; but the unlikely is always a possibility for our Lord. Our Lord Jesus Christ is a Lord who re-makes broken lives and builds new and joyful lives on the ruins of the old.
The lady who came to Jacob’s Well bore heavy water jugs on her head or shoulders. She came seeking water at the bottom of a hole some fifty feet deep in the earth. She would leave unburdened of any water jugs, but with a heart filled with the Water of Heaven from an infinite height ABOVE the earth.
As she chatted with the Lord, she came to know Him in a personal and heart-changing way. She came to know Him as the Savior promised to Abraham and the prophets. Her tortured soul was changed in an instant and the burden of hopelessness and despair with which she had come to the Well that day had been miraculously removed. Christ lifted her unbecoming yoke and gave her new hope, new dreams, new character, and a new credibility that made her testimony believable to the people of Sychar who had before regarded her as of no account whatsoever. She had been evasive to Christ in telling Him that she had no husband, for she had had five, and her present companion was not her husband. But the secrets of her heart (or ours) cannot be hidden from the All-Seeing Eye of our Lord.
The woman departed with a new heart and a new persona. Where she had been shunned previously, suddenly, everyone in the village believed her testimony of having seen the Messiah. They were compelled to go the Well and see Him in person based on the woman’s testimony. Is it not amazing that the people believed this formerly adulterous woman? Our faith in Christ grants us authority in expressing truth. We no longer base our credibility with others on the ruins of a bankrupt reputation, but rather upon the authenticity of our faith in Christ. He gives us His Seal-Ring of authority so that our testimony bears His authority in truth.
Perhaps there is a place of meeting for someone you know and love who needs to be surprised at the moment they least suspect by the presence and power of Christ. Perhaps their thirst for Waters Unknown may drive them to the meeting place. At that moment, there will be no impediment to their coming to the place appointed by our Lord for the meeting. It may be a sycamore tree at which Zaccheaus was found, or a dusty Road to Damascus for Paul, but the Lord will never fail to seek and to find. Rest in that assurance.