Third Sunday of Lent 2011 Readings and thoughts

Doing what Jesus did…

Exodus 17:3-7;Psalm 94:1-2,6-9; Romans 5:1-2,5-8;John 4:5-42

There was a funeral in the town. Everybody would be there. The parish priest had to go elsewhere that day, but he was happy that the funeral was in the hands of an intelligent common-sense no-nonsense curate.

That evening, when he returned, he asked the curate how the funeral had gone. ‘Ah, it went OK,’ he said, ‘No great problems. A huge crowd. Oh, by the way, I had one small problem.’ What was that?’ ‘Mrs Robinson was at the funeral, and as you know, she’s a Protestant.’ Ah, sure that’s no problem. I would have expected here to be there. A good friend of the family and all.’ ‘Ah, but she came up for Communion,’said the curate. This rivoted the parish priest to his chair, as he returned with a look of horror on his face. ‘What happened?’ he gasped. ‘Well,’ said the curate, ‘she was in my line for Communion. She was about two away from me when I spotted her…’ ‘Go on, go on’, said the parish priest, ‘What did you do? What did you do?’ ‘Well’, said the curate, ‘I didn’t know what to do. I had to make a snap decision. I just decided right there and then that I would do what I believe Jesus would do.’ ‘Oh my God, no!’ exclaimed the parish priest, ‘surely you didn’t do that!”

What really would Jesus do in that situation? We don’t really know, but today’s gospel shows us how would Jesus approach to a similar situation.

In today’s gospel, St John relates the encounter of Christ and a Samaritan woman at the well of Jacob. as required by the Jewish Law, Jesus, like all Jews, had to spend the Feast of Passover in Jerusalem. So, in our gospel today, we see Jesus on his way back from Jerusalem to his hometown in Galilee.  Sychar then was a usuall stopping point for the pilgrims. And it’s here that Jesus meets the Samaritan woman fetching water from the well.

Here Jesus, took the opportunity to reach out to the heart of human being, by using the human language.  Since the woman comes to water, assuming that she is thirsty, then Jesus meets her right in that specific need of her… “Give me a drink. “

This is the beauty of our God…in Jesus.

God meets us wherever we are. God meets us in our time of need. God seeks to encounter us in our very need. We just don’t recognize His working there at times, because we are so pre-occupied with many things, problems, etc. Or, we fail to see God working in our needs because we think that we can really make things happen for us, without God. But as Christians, we just have to believe and accept the fact that we are seemingly able to make things happen because there is SOMEONE who allows these things to happen. And it is always a GOD- moment, a GRACED moment.

This moment, or these GOD moments, may be, and need not be, highly dramatic, as what happens to St Paul in the road to Damascus.

We just have to note this that, whenever anything happens that stops us in our tracks and makes us think, we are being touched by grace. It happens all the time. For instance, a total stranger offers us a hand, an innocent kid asks a very innocent yet deep question, our planned projects fail, and so on. In all these things, God meets us, and He offers his abundant graces to us. Remember, it is an OFFER, not an imposition. We can accept or refuse it as such. If we accept the offer…change and growth in us happens. If we refuse it, our spirit would die of thirst of living water that only God can provide.

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