Sunday Breakfast With the Word Third Sunday of Lent Year A
The Living Water that wells to Eternal Life.
Exodus 17:3-7,Romans 5:1-2, 5-8, John 4:5-42,
Water is a basic human need. We need water to maintain the body”s metabolism. Water makes up 60% of the body. When one asks for water to drink, it indicates the giving of the body’s most important need.
Today, Jesus asks the Samaritan woman to give Him water. While trying to answer Jesus, Jesus through gradual conversation points Her to the Living Water that only He can give. This is the Living water that wells to eternal life.
To understand today’s message let us take the readings gradually and systematically.
In the gospel today, Jesus is tired and approaches the woman who comes to the well to draw water.
Jesus requests “Give me water to drink” . The woman’s initial response shows that she is yet to know who is begging her the water. She seems not until Jesus exposes her secrets.
In this gospel, Jesus is in need of a basic need. He comes to request that from the woman. What Jesus requests from the woman is to attend to Him and nothing more.
In the same way, God also longs for something from us. God longs that every soul will seek Him with all their hearts. He wants us to satisfy His thirst. God desires strongly that we do this.
God wants us to give Him a little attention. He has something in store for us which is even more important that what He desires from us.
2. God desires to fill us with the most basic need of man. This basic need of man transcends all that man needs. This is need that only Jesus gives. The basic need is that water that truly and eternally satisfies our thirst.
3. As Jesus seeks that the woman pay attention to Him, He also requests our time and total attention to Him. He is eager to satisfy our spiritual barrenness. He will do this, if we are able to satisfy His thirst and hunger to see us come to Him always. .
4. In the gospel, if you are so observant and critical, You can see how the conversation of Jesus changes from a request to a discussion on the Living water.
From a request, Jesus goes to discuss what He would give to the woman. Therefore, when we pay attention to Him, He will lead us to that water that satisfies our eternal thirst.
5. The water that Jesus gives is the the Living Water.
This water does not die, it does not dry. The basic water continues to enliven us, even to eternity. This water keeps the grace of God alive in us. This is the Living Water that wells to Eternal Life.
What is this Living Water? We shall know later.
It means that what we can give Jesus is just what we can, but what He can give us, is beyond us.
As Jesus leads the woman to the truth, He is also inviting us. He is eager to teach and guide us to the truth. Jesus comes to us that we might bring people to Him just like the Samaritan woman through her encounter with Jesus leads many people to Him.
When We doubt.
In the first reading the Israelites yearn for water and grumble against Moses and God.
They complain against Moses and question the reason he brings them out of Egypt. Moses later appeals to God .
The people doubted God’s love and abiding presence. The Isrealites forget all that God is doing for them because of a little challenge.
This is exactly what we do when we face with challenges. We tend to forget in a haste all that God is doing for us. Today the Israelites questioned “‘Is the Lord with us, or not?’
Many of us always fall into this.
2. When the israelites grumbled against God, God instructs Moses to take some of the elders of Israel and move on to the forefront of the people.
He shall take in His hands the staff with which he struck the river, and go. God instructs him to strike the rock, and water will flow from it for the people to drink.’
Moses does this, in the sight of the elders of Israel. The place was named Massah and Meribah because of the grumbling of the people and because they put the Lord to the test by questioning if God is still with them or not.
The point is that whenever we are in need and we think God is not providing it for us, we tend to grumble against God, doubt His love and care.
Sometimes we lose our faith, stop going to church and even when He comes to us, we still find it hard to understand Him. We continually doubt His power and what He can do for us.
3. The Samaritan questioned Jesus’ power to give her water at the initial time because she was not aware of who Jesus is.
One thing we request from every christian is to know and study who they worship. This will help us to develop strong faith in Jesus.
In any relationship, both parties are beneficiaries. Jesus is not actually begging for the earthly water but to use that moment to bring the woman’s attention to Him.
Jesus asks this water from us that we pay attention to Him for He is the surest way for the water that is eternal.
The Israelites grumble because they were thirsty. By this, they showed lack of faith in God who has been leading them.
Our relationship with God is not only on what God can give to us, but what we can also give to God. He requires nothing from us if not our faith, relationship and full attention to Him.
1.Jesus initiates the conversation with the woman by asking her to give Him a drink. The Samaritan woman reacts in surprise, knowing that the Israelites consider the Samaritans entirely unworthy and idolatrous, and she marvels that a Jewish teacher would deign to contact her.
This shows, there is no discrimination in Jesus. There is no division. Jesus knows that the woman is a sinner and yet He goes to her.
This is how Jesus approaches the sinner everyday seeking for our repentance,but the sinner is busily concerned with the things he or she thinks he wants to achieve or possess.
2. The Samaritan woman thinks the well where she draws water is more important than Jesus.She questioned him “Are you greater than our father Jacob, who gave us this cistern and drank from it himself with his children and his flocks?”.
We are so much concerned and busy in the world that we think that what we have or what we want to possess is more important than a sincere attention and relationship with God.
This has made us lose focus and keep God to the background, because we want to get what we want first.
3. Thirdly, in this encounter, we see a discussion between divinity and humanity, between God and the sinner.
Humanity thinks he knows everything. The sinner thinks it is better to focus on what he or she enjoys at the present moment. At last they find out that though they have but what they have is nothing.
We see how Jesus tries to find a way to initiate a conversation. This is also what happens at prayer. Prayer is the conversation between the sinner and God, between humanity and divinity. God initiates this conversation, seeking for our return and knowledge of Him.
What the sinner needs is an encounter, a divine touch, an attention to the things of God, to be totally influenced by the grace of God.
The Living Water that Jesus Gives.
Now the question is “what is this Living water?
In the gospel Passage Jesus tells the woman “If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water” (John 4:10).
Notice that He does not say that He is the living water, but that He would give living water to her, and when she received it, she would never thirst again.
2.Remember when Jesus is in the temple surrounded by a throng of worshipers. He suddenly cried out, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scriptures said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.’
John says that Jesus spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified” (John 7:37–39).
So, the Holy Spirit is the Living Water. Living water Comes directly from God and is strongly associated with the presence of God.
The bible says “From Eden, where God dwells with man, a river welled up that formed the headwaters of four mighty rivers. (Gen 2:10). Psalm 29:10 pictures God sitting “enthroned over the flood.” In Revelation, the river of life flows out from under the throne of God (Rev. 22:1).
Because living water came directly from God, it was closely associated with God’s Spirit in the world. When God promised to redeem his people, he promised to send his Spirit:
3. God also says “For I will pour out water on the thirsty land, and streams on the dry ground; I will pour out My Spirit on your offspring and My blessing on your descendants; and they will spring up among the grass like poplars by streams of water. (Isaiah 44:3 – 4). This indicates that the Living Water that wells to Eternal Life is the Holy Spirit.
One Without The Holy Spirit
The difference with or without rain in Israel is amazing , the hills can be barren and brown much of the year, but after a season of rain, it is covered in green meadows and flowers. Where there are rivers, lush vegetation surrounds them, while only yards away, all is barren.
So, out of this arose the idea of living water, or mayim chaim (MY-eem KHY-eem), which refers to water in the form of rain or flowing from a natural spring, which has come directly from God, not carried by human hands or stored in cisterns.
It also is a contrast to sea water, especially that of the Dead Sea, which looks refreshing but is poisonous, and makes the land around it barren.
The Living water refreshes, heals and gives life again. One without the Holy Spirit is barren spiritually, and lacks spiritual strength and power, We need the Living water to refreshen up again.
How to get the Living Water.
First,the Samaritan woman humbled herself at the first contact with Jesus, but it is unclear what to do next, but she has no way to offer Jesus what He asks.
Jesus instead tells her that she should ask for the gifts of “living water,” which we know is the Holy Spirit.
Here, Jesus wants a prayer of petition. If we specifically ask to be filled with the “wellspring” of salvation and eternal life, we have to come ask in Humility.
Secondly, the Samaritan woman then offers a prayer of petition, but Jesus is not done teaching her how to pray.
He asks the woman to call her husband, knowing fully well she has lived a sinful life. She confesses her sin, and offers praise.Teaching us that before we ask for this gift, we have to confess our pasts and the sins we have committed and fully prepare to receive this gift of salvation.
Thirdly, the woman gives Jesus the chance to speak to her and reveal Himself totally to her. Jesus then tells the Samaritan woman that He is the Messiah whom she seeks, revealing Himself even though Jesus has only done so with the disciples at this point.
In fact, in John 4:26, Jesus uses “I am he” to identify himself as Messiah. The Samaritan woman experiences a conversion of her heart and goes out and evangelizes in her community, converting many others.
In the same way, we have to allow Jesus to speak to us through the Word and give Him a chance in our lives if we truly need conversion. Just like the woman opened herself to Jesus, we have to open our hearts to Him.
1.In this Lenten season God is calling for our attention to satisfy us with the deepest need. He asks us for water to give us the living water.
God is asking for our attention. He wants a conversation with us. God needs our relationship with us. Therefore, we are called to respond with humility, gratitude, praise, and petitions to be filled with the Holy Spirit so that we make disciples of all nations.
2. In this encounter, Jesus breaks the barrier between the jews and the Samaritans, who are long aged enemies. He was willing not only to open up a conversation with a perceived enemy but also offered her a chance to be saved. Let us also do the same with others.
In this lenten season we have to break the barriers of long aged enmity with whoever we are not in talking terms with. This is the time and season we have to make peace.
3. Jesus willingly offered the woman a chance to be saved. She also went and invited others. Also let us allow ourselves to be used by God to touch the lives of others.
Secondly, let us not withhold the goodness that we have for others because of any misunderstanding we have with them. Always be good to everyone.
4. In the gospel, when the Samaritans came up to Jesus, they begged him to stay with them. Jesus stayed for two days. Within that few days, he spoke to them and many more came to believe.
The Samaritans teach us the need to sincerely and wholeheartedly desire to have a time with Jesus. Just as he accepted to stay with them, when we desire Jesus sincerely, we shall surely encounter Him.
He will fill us with the power of the Holy Spirit. When the Holy Spirit dwells in us, our lives will definitely change. We become also alive spiritually.
When we truly encounter Jesus, we shall proclaim Him like the Samaritans did today. We shall be the people that will tell others about Him.
The Samaritans said “‘Now we no longer believe because of what you told us; we have heard him ourselves and we know that he really is the saviour of the world’.
Those who talk against Jesus are those who have not any single encounter with Him and do not wish to have. He is always willing to satisfy our thirst if we can.
5. Therefore, let us not be like the Isrealites in the first reading, who easily forgot all the good deeds that God did for them. They began to complain, when it seems God has forsaken them. But like the Samaritan woman, let us always be eager to trust His words when it seems our well of Joy is dried up.
The woman met Jesus and her life was changed. When we seek the living water that only Jesus can give, our lives will definitely change.
May God bless you and give us the grace to seek Him with all our hearts. Amen.
HAPPY SUNDAY AND GOD BLESS YOU
This is a wonderful message of hope is really increases my faith in him.
Thank you Fr