"Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman's testimony."
Throughout the Bible we see God using common, ordinary people to do His work. Noah was ridiculed, Jonah ran away, David, was a shepherd boy, and Rahab was a prostitute. Moses didn't speak well, yet freed the Israelites from Pharaoh and led them to The Promised Land. And perhaps most unlikely--Saul the Christian killer--who later became Paul, one of the greatest men of faith.
This week we met the Samaritan woman, or the Woman at the Well as she is also known. We don't learn her name, but I believe Jesus knew it. I believe He knew it and said it often as He was speaking to her under the scorching sun so many years ago by the well in Sychar.
I believe He looked her in the eyes, as was against the Jewish custom then, and spoke to her with dignity and respect--in a way she would never have been spoken to in the best of times, let alone with a past as blighted as hers.
If you have not already, read John 4:1-42
Jesus was alone. His Disciples had gone into town. That gave Jesus the perfect opportunity to meet with this woman without scrutiny and without fear of being judged by others. Whether her previous 5 husbands had all perished, as was not totally uncommon in those days due to war and disease, we know for sure she was living with a man who was not her husband.
She tried to deflect His command to go get her husband because she knew she was living in sin. Jesus did what we see God do so often through the Bible...He brought to light who she really was. All that she tried to hide in darkness with half-truths and cunning turns of phrase, He acknowledged truthfully. He laid it bare. And then He told her all about who He was.
And this is where the story gets good.
Jesus met this woman right where she was.
He used the opportunity to talk about one thing--water--and relate it to something else, something deeper. It was so like Jesus to use a lesser truth to point out a greater one. When we drink, we become thirsty again. Our thirst will never be quenched forever with one sip. But when we seek God to fill our "thirst" we will be filled. Could it be that Jesus was gently pointing out to this woman that she was trying to fill her need...her thirst...with one man after another and never succeeding? And was He pointing out that until she seeks God--the Living Water-- that she will continue to thirst?
And look what happened when she shared her testimony with others:
"Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, 'He told me everything I ever did.' So when the Samaritans came to him, they urged him to stay with them, and he stayed two days. And because of his words many more became believers. They said to the woman, 'We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world.'" John 4:39-42.
Whether you have a past like that of this woman or you've lived a very quiet life, you still have a testimony. Our stories...our lives and our need for Jesus...are our testimonies.
Telling our stories is invaluable because it's not really about us. It's about how God has brought us through our experiences. It's about sharing with others who God is and how He loves us. We all fall short and we all need a Savior. Telling our stories and showing God's strength in our weaknesses is what we are called to do.
Let's tell our stories. Let's shine a light on Christ's grace and redemption by sharing how He has worked in our own lives.
And when we do, others will believe and recognize their own stories.
Time to dig in! If you have not already, please click HERE and start at the beginning of this Devotional. You can download the scripture overview, the study guide and the memory verse cards.
This devotional was written by Mandy.
Focus on this today: "Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman's testimony."