Sometimes the truth of scripture meets the reality of your circumstances in a way that it feels like you just got slapped.
I have a love affair with these moments.
When I think back on moments in which the truth of the gospel spoke compassion, grace and change, I think of John chapter 4.
John chapter 4 elegantly paints the picture of the reality of many of our days. It shows us who Jesus is, in a way that not only is tangible but encouraging and needed.
The Samaritan women was labeled, she bore a symbol of shame.
Her symbol meant disgraced, disgusting, man stealer. Her symbol was her bucket. The very bucket she was carrying as she walked to the watering well.
Their watering well was their social gathering place. It was their Facebook wall, their 140 character tweet, their instagram pic.
It was their social Mecca.
Her community would have come to the watering well when it was the popular thing to do, when photo ops were to be had, when the chatter was worth retelling. Her community would have come to the watering well together.
Yet she chose to come alone.
She came in hopes that no one would see her. That no one would talk about her shame.
In the midst of her careful planning, she still had to carry her marker with her. Her symbol of shame was not missing as she went to the well.
Little did she know that today as she tried to remove herself from being known, she was about to be met by a man who would know her better than any.
Her savior was going to be at the well.
Her cravings that she was feeding in all the wrong places were about to get met by Christ. He would offer not only water to drink but also living water that would satisfy her deepest spiritual need.
Christ knew her, and as opposed to measuring her to him, he chose grace, forgiveness and love. Christ reminds us that he knows who we are and says I am the way, the truth and the life.
Once Christ spoke truth to her and she believed. She ran back to town to share her story and to bring the crowd back with her. If you read too fast you will miss the most beautiful part.
The scripture states that she left her bucket.
The person of God is Jesus, and Jesus knows us better than anyone here on this earth. So when we try to cover our shame, our marker, our bucket, Jesus says I already know and I choose you in the midst.
What is our bucket that we are carrying around hoping no one sees? What are the issues Christ is calling us to leave at his feet?
My prayer is that we leave whatever it is at his feet and move forward with forgiveness and grace.
About the Writer:
Liz, just a girl who spends her days in seminary classes, spends her afternoons interning with First Baptist Dallas Women’s, spends her evenings with her friends laughing and challenging the definition of community to be something much deeper. If you need her you can probably find her watching Dancing with the Stars while on Pinterest, challenging the worldly norm of a 28 year old.