Sunday, May 15, 2011

sermon sunday {discovering the well that satisfies}

The Story:

One day Jesus was passing through a Samaritan village when He stopped at an old well to rest. He was worn out and thirsty from the hot, dusty, desert travel. A woman approached the well, as she had many times before, carrying her water pot. She was coming to draw water to quench her continual thirst. Jesus in His physical thirst, asked her for a drink. This shocked the woman. Jesus was a Jew, she was a Samaritan, Jesus was a man, she was a woman. She was a woman known to live a lifestyle of sin. Jesus asking something of this woman was an unfitting scene, but Jesus crosses all barriers to share Himself with us, no matter race, social position,  or sin in our lives. 

She asked why HE was asking HER for water, and Jesus responds, " If you knew the generosity of God and who I am, you would be asking me for a drink, and I would give you fresh living water."  

This confused the woman even more, and she questioned, "Where's your bucket? Do you know how deep this well is? Where do you plan on getting this 'living water'?" She did not understand that Jesus was talking about a different kind of water. She was skeptical.  Doubtful. Questioning Jesus' words. 

Jesus, pointing to the well, went on to explain to her, "Everyone who drinks this water will get thirsty again and again. Anyone who drinks of the water I give will never thirst-not ever. The water I give will be an artesian spring within, gushing fountains of endless life."   

The woman got super excited, pleading for Jesus to give her this wonderful water he was talking of.  So that she would never have to come draw water from the well again. She still did not understand. She was interested in Jesus' message because she thought that it would make her life easier. 

Before Jesus handed her the water that would forever quench her thirst he said, "Go call your husband and then come back."  Now.... Jesus was touching the thirst of her soul that needed to be forever filled. The thirst that only He had the water to quench. 

The woman turned her head, and mumbled, "I have no husband."  

"That's right." Jesus said, "You've had five husbands, and the man you're living with now isn't even your husband.." 

 The woman replied, "Oh so you're a prophet." and she quickly changed the subject. She had become uncomfortable with the conversation, Jesus had exposed her deepest need and it hit too close to home. After they had talked awhile about theological issues she finally admitted that she was unsure about everything but that she knew the Messiah was coming and when He did she would know the whole story. 

"I am he," said Jesus. "You don't have to wait any longer or look any further."   

I believe the women finally realized who she was talking to, she had finally understood what kind of water He was speaking of. Her experience with The Messiah caused her to drink deeply from the right well, the only well that will ever fully satisfy, for the first time in her life. The woman left her water pot, and ran back to the village, telling everyone who she had met and what he had done for her.

How many times I've made my way to that well, carrying my broken water pot. How many times I have let down my bucket into the deep hole full of dirty, garbage infested waters.. How often I have drank deeply from my cup of lustful desires, envious thoughts, selfish pride, trying to quench the unbearable thirst of my soul. So many years I have drank from a well that will never ever satisfy.I have spent so much time, energy and focus on bad habits and sinful behaviors and it has always left me empty and hurting. For just a small amount of time I would fill full and satisfied, but very soon I would begin to struggle with shame, guilt, loneliness, hurt, or rejection. Always pressing me to go back for more. This is the nature of addiction. Becoming dependent on drawing from a well that is filled with death and destruction. A well that NEVER quenches. Leaving us in a pattern of returning again and again.

"Death and destruction are never satisfied, and neither are the eyes of man." Proverbs 27:20

I can read the story above and easily replace the women with the name Kristin. I can imagine myself sitting at that well with Jesus. learning of what He has to offer me. Discovering the right well. Understanding that I no longer have to dip into this sinful cesspool to try and quench my thirst, only to make me sick and wanting. I can see Jesus dealing with my habitual destruction and addictions. Pouring into me living water. Water that truly will satisfy. 

"My people have committed a compound sin: they've walked out on me, the fountain of fresh flowing waters, and then dug cisterns- cisterns that leak, cisterns that hold no water at all." Jeremiah 2:13

The women at the well left her water pot behind and went to tell others about who she had encountered and how it had changed her life. This gives me hope and encouragement. Hope that I will reach a point in my life where my mind is always fixed on my savior because I have encountered Him in a life changing way. Hope that I will live a life of true freedom, never to struggle with habitual sin and addiction again, because I have learned to leave those things behind. I will be traveling to a new well. I no longer will need my broken water pot, it won't do me any good. I have discovered the well that satisfies...

do you know of this well? do you know the person who gives living water? have you experienced it? do you drink deeply from it? has your life been changed because of this discovery? if so, will you tell me about it?

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