Monday, February 18, 2008

First Thoughts

And so it begins. The lectionary readings for this coming Sunday are about water. The Israelites have left Egypt and are traveling through the Wilderness. Things aren't exactly like they wished they were and they have been making Moses' life miserable. For one thing they don't have enough water. They're hot, dirty, and thirsty. And they don't like it much.
Paul's letter to the Romans from chapter 5 is about how we have been saved through faith by God's grace. And even when we are hemmed in by our those things in our lives that are problems we still shout our praises to God because we know that this will help us develop our patience. God will bless us with so much that our puny little lives won't be able to contain everything.
The gospel lesson is from Mark. It is the longest recorded conversation of Jesus with anyone. He is at Jacob's well while his disciples have gone on ahead to get some groceries. While he is resting there a Samaritan women comes there to get water from the well.
Jesus initiates the conversation by asking her for a drink of water. She couldn't believe that he was talking to her, first because she was a woman and second because she was a Samaritan. There was no love lost between Jews and Samaritans because the Samaritans had intermarried with the people of the Promised Land and were therefore unclean.
Towards the end of the conversation Jesus reveals to her that he is the Messiah whom they have all been waiting for. She runs into town leaving her water jug by the well to tell everyone that there is someone at the well who told her everything about herself. Things no stranger to could have possibly known.
And so they came. Some believed because of her evangelism and more believed after hearing Jesus' words. Mark doesn't tell us what he said. He just says that they heard it for themselves and knew for sure that he was the Savior of the World!
And so I will let these stories simmer in my brain for a while as I prepare my Lenten message for Wednesday evening.

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