Have you ever felt like God can’t use you for his amazing purposes because you are broken? Maybe there have been hurtful things done to you that have cause cracks and scars in your life. Maybe you are the person doing the hurtful things that damage others. What if there are cracks in your vessel because of bad choices you have made or because of situations others have put you in?
The Woman at the Well knows just how you feel. Read her story HERE (John 4:1-13; 39-42) and then come back to talk more about it.
Let’s talk about a few things that will give weight to this story and what we can learn from the Woman at the Well, also know as the Samaritan Woman.
- This woman was a Samaritan because she lived in Samaria.
- Jews and Samaritans did not get along and avoided each other. Most Jews did not see Samaritans (even if they believed in God) to be “worthy” or religious enough.
- She came to the well at the 6th hour of the day when it was hot. She was avoiding other women, who would come to get water in the cooler hours of the morning. So we know she was an outcast and other women didn’t want to be near here.
- Jesus shocked the woman by speaking to her.
- She was a woman.
- She was not a Jew (like Jesus)—but a Samaritan. No “proper” Jew would have contact with her.
- She had a bad reputation.
- What is “living water?” Living water meant running water, like a running stream. Only living (moving) water could be used to take baths in Judaism to purify a person who was unclean. Jesus had come with the gift of God that would purify all believers of all sin. (John 4:10)
- At first she didn’t get that Jesus was the living water. (John 4:15) She thought Jesus could give her enough water so she would never have to come back to the well again.
- Jesus showed the woman her need for God when he said “Call your husband.” Of course, he knew her sin and situation. She changed the subject, like we do when we are convicted. (John 4:16-18)
What was her purpose?
To show God’s glory. Did you know that you were created to show God’s glory? (Isaiah 43:7) It is every human being’s purpose here on earth. And just like you, the Samaritan Woman would show that glory in her own unique way.
How was she unique?
She was a woman, a Samaritan and a sinful outcast with whom Jesus spoke. She was broken, damaged, cracked, scarred and hurt because of her bad choices. She had five husbands and was living with a 6th man. God tells us to only marry one person. The emotional hurt by these relationships caused cracks in her vessel–wounds and pain in her heart that no man could ever heal. Only God could.
Did she allow God to fill her?
NO: Before meeting Jesus she tried to fill her empty vessel with love from men. And yet she was even more lonely and empty.
But after meeting Jesus, YES, she allowed herself to be filled by God.
How was she poured out for God’s purpose?
She told all her neighbors about Jesus. Even though she was an lonely outcast who probably never spoke to her neighbors, she bravely went to share Jesus with them. When she was filled with God, she no longer felt shame and guilt, but was confident in His love and acceptance of her.
Because of her former, broken life, they recognized that her cracks had been repaired from God filling her up. They listened to her and saw the difference in her and believed. Many went to go see Jesus for themselves and also believed and accepted him.
Because of the Woman at the Well, we know that even when we have “cracks” in our lives, God will mend those cracks. In fact, our brokeness can often show God’s glory in a greater way. Sometimes, God’s light shines brightest through the cracks of a broken vessel.
Leave a comment and tell me what you find most interesting about the Samaritan Woman. What can we learn from her?