The Samaritan woman

The conversation of the Lord Jesus with the Samaritan woman reveals unedited aspects of God's wisdom. None of the other encounters of the Lord with diverse individuals gives us such profound lessons about the human soul and God's Grace.

A woman, and furthermore a Samaritan. Two characteristics that made that being almost something, more than someone--given the prejudices of those days. Nevertheless, the Lord takes the time and the initiative to bless her with His maximum attention in talking to her. This reveals to us that inside her was all the profound depth of the unsatisfied human soul.

She was burdened with a long history of affections and disaffections, encounters and disencounters. She must have been attractive, always accompanied by those of the opposite sex. Five husbands she had experienced and the one she was now living with was not her husband. Her feminine vanity must have felt stimulated each time that a new pretender came to her door seeking her friendship. She was a woman that must have been secretly envied by the rest. Nevertheless, in the depths of her being, she carried a drama. She had tried by all means available to obtain happiness. However, she did not attain it. So here she comes, as all other days, at a time during which she would not collide with the furtive and rejecting glances of her peers.

She did not meet those she was trying to avoid, but se met One with whom she never expected to meet. She did not even imagine what was in store for her. This day was to be totally different to any other day of her life. If she had known Who was going to meet her, she might have avoided meeting Him. She actually met One whose morality was totally perfect.

She met Him, Emmanuel, God with us, the Owner of all worlds, who –amazingly– petitioned her to give Him a drink of water. She, a very unhappy woman, has the opportunity to give out of her poverty something to God Himself. By Jacob's well, two extremes of the universe become united in such a strange way. He, the Champion Giver asks her to give Him some water. She, poverty personified, gives Him what He requests.

But, what is it that God asks from man? Is it water? Isn't He the Creator of water Himself? Actually, a drink of water was not His real goal. He asks man to give Him something that only satisfies momentarily because He wants to give to man that which will definitely satisfy man eternally. It is an exchange of waters, the transitory for the eternal. When God asks something from man, it is to return to man something better infinitely multiplied. It is a barter initiated in God but which always concludes with man eternally and fully satisfied in God. When God asks for something, it is only His excuse to abundantly return something better to man.

The experience of Nicodemus shows us the uselessness and vanity of knowing God's things in a merely natural way. The experience of the Samaritan woman shows us the vacuity produced in the soul by the affections and pleasures of the flesh. To Nicodemus, the Lord offers a new birth. To the Samaritan woman the Lord offers to give her to drink of water that never dries up, but will always satisfy her. These two are representative characters of you and me, of the whole human race really.

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