When Jesus Met a Samaritan Woman – John 4:1-6

Now Jesus learned that the Pharisees had heard that he was gaining and baptizing more disciples than John— although in fact it was not Jesus who baptized, but his disciples. So he left Judea and went back once more to Galilee.

Now he had to go through Samaria. So he came to a town in Samaria called Sychar, near the plot of ground Jacob had given to his son Joseph. Jacob’s well was there, and Jesus, tired as he was from the journey, sat down by the well. It was about noon.” John 4:1-6

I thought I might take a few days looking at what happened when Jesus met the Samaritan woman. It’s an unusual episode in the gospel accounts, because it feels like a spacious conversation – Jesus hasn’t got a crowd around him this time and we can just watch this woman and Jesus and see what happens.

But first of all, a very small detail is the subject of today’s post. From what we can tell, Jesus did not sit down at the well with a plan to convert the whole area. He was about to reveal his true nature to a gentile woman who would believe him, be overjoyed and become the first evangelist to the Samaritans. But all that is to come. All Jesus knew, apparently, was that he was tired, so he gave himself some rest by the well in the midday sun. He may have been the son of God, but we have no reason to think he knew what was about to happen. He was just going about his day.

It encourages me that God doesn’t expect me to be able to prepare for every eventuality. I’m grateful to him that he has promised to be always with me: I want to hold onto the truth that I will be able to handle the unexpected as it arises. I might not have tomorrow’s answers today, but as I wake up tomorrow I want to remember that God the Father knows what the day holds in store, and like all his other children, including Jesus, I’ve decided to trust him to lead.

Father, help me follow where you lead. When I’m tired, help me let you give me rest. Protect me from thinking I have to be super-spiritual or superwoman. Thank you for everything you have prepared in the day you made ahead of me.

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