She approached the well in the heat of the day, expecting to quietly draw water in solitude and peace. There was a man there, but she mostly ignored him.
“Will you give me a drink?”
It was a small request, so ordinary. She was surprised, though. She was a woman, a Samaritan woman. She would expect to be ignored or even shunned by this Jewish man.
You may be familiar with this Biblical account of Jesus’ encounter with the woman at the well. It’s a well-known and often shared story of Jesus’ compassion and a woman’s response.
Just a couple of days ago, as I sat with a couple of friends, we visited this passage again. It was one of those moments when a familiar passage suddenly reads a bit differently and speaks to me with a new challenge.
The woman immediately began to complicate the simple request.
- Why are you asking me? You know I’m not the best person for the job.
- What do you mean you could give me a drink? You have nothing to draw with.
- Hey, let’s talk about where we should worship.
His confirmation: I am He.
For the first time in many readings and hearings of this woman’s encounter with Jesus, I saw the simplicity of his request and I saw myself in the woman.
How often does he ask us do a similar simple, small thing?
- Walk outside and speak to the young mom and her children as they pass by on their walk.
- Fix a plate for the widower down the street.
- Buy a cup and a snack for that college student studying at the local coffee shop.
- Send a card to someone who is hurting, just to remind them that someone cares.
- Walk into the next room and really listen to a child or your spouse for ten minutes.
He does, and too often I respond just as she did, denying the power of the love of Christ in me and for others.
- Why me?
- I don’t have the resources.
- What if it’s weird or uncomfortable for me (or them)?
- I’m just too busy.
But it is in the small acts of kindness that we unleash the power of his love. What if we knew that the small things of every day could be huge in the kingdom of God?
I’m committed to paying attention to opportunities in the mundane and the everyday. Will you join me, friends, as we hear Jesus asking us to do one small thing today?
For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the things he planned for us long ago.
Share with me in the comments…how have you seen him use your “one small thing”?
By grace alone,
Simplicity runs deep….
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