March 13

John 4:5-14

“The Samaritan woman said to him, ‘How is it that you, a Jew, ask a drink of me, a woman of Samaria?’ (Jews do not share things in common with Samaritans.)” vs. 9

As John tells the story, Jesus doesn’t mess around with the long detour around Samaria that Galileans Jews generally used on their journey to Jerusalem. He takes the direct route and at the well near Sychar, a Samaritan city, gives a Samaritan woman the surprise of her life. He asks her for a drink of water and seems not to care that such an action makes him ritually unclean. It’s a lovely and touching story and reminds us that amazing opportunities for mission happen when we take the time to reach across barriers and violate boundaries. Jesus as the Christ knows that there is really no difference between the sacred and the profane. All those artificial distinctions that humans have invented to make their little group seem special are an affront to the Divine Presence. One of the blessings of living in our time is that some of those differences are being exposed in all their pettiness and as a result our experiences of the other have been amazingly enriched. Of course there’s a lot of work to be done. We’ve spent thousands of years building walls and they’ve only begun to come tumbling down. But some day the Christ’s mission will be complete and all peoples and nations will be one–and what a glorious day that will be!

Thought for the Day: Why do people fear a united world?

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