Occasionally, we will reprint prior devotions that now reflect on the coming lectionary texts. This is a reprint from a devotion originally published on March 17, 2014.
Prayer: We come to your well, Lord, for the life-giving waters. Praise be to you. Amen.
Reading: John 4: 5-42 (Click to read text)
Stop and GROW: After reading the text, discuss/ponder the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America's Book of Faith questions, which are part of Camp Mount Luther's GROW Time with campers.
QUESTION 1: What scares, confuses, challenges, or doesn’t make sense to me in this text?
QUESTION 2: What delights me in this text or is my favorite part of the story?
QUESTION 3: What stories or memories does this text stir in me?
QUESTION 4: What is God up to in this text?
Reflection: When I was a camper at Mount Luther, I remember going on a hike where we took water purification tablets. If I recall correctly, we did a day hike and stopped a spot along a stream where we ate lunch. We took some water from that creek, added the water purification tablets, and were able to drink the water, knowing it had been purified.
Water is needed in our lives every day. Without it, we cannot survive. Our tissues and organs need water to live. In fact, I’m told that we could survive for a while without food, but not water.
In our gospel for this Sunday, Jesus tells the Samaritan woman that he is the life-giving water that she needs. He says to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, but those who drink of the water that I will give them will never be thirsty. The water that I will give will become in them a spring of water gushing up to eternal life.” I’m sure she was very surprised when Jesus said this to her. I think I would have been dumb-founded.
But Jesus is that life-giving water. With Christ, we are given life eternal. As I was thinking about this passage, I thought about those water purification tablets. We had to be prepared and take them along to enjoy the water by the stream. Without the tablets, the water could have done us harm. In the same manner, Christ is with us where ever we go and is available when the “waters” of our life need to be made “pure” and given proper perspective. Drink from that fountain and never be thirst again! --Chad Hershberger
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