“There came a woman of Samaria to draw water: Jesus said to her, ‘Give me a drink… If you knew the gift of God, and who it is that is saying to you, ‘Give me a drink,’ you would have asked him and he would have given you living water.”John 4:7,10
What do you thirst for? What is the source of your well you draw from?
God always seems to amaze me. When I hear or see a message more than once, I know I must pay attention to it and look for the deeper meaning in my life.
Today’s reading is about the Samaritan woman at the well. She goes to the well at an hour that is beaming hot. If you live in the south, you can imagine the heat at the time of day she goes to the well which likely had no shaded path to the well or shade nearby the well.
When she approaches the well, she sees a man that peaks her curiosity. He has no rope and no bucket. The first thing He says to her is “give me a drink”. Reflect on that for a minute.
A few days ago, I started reading the book “I Thirst: 40 Days With Mother Teresa,” by Joseph Langford. Guess what the reflection on day 1 is about? THE WOMAN AT THE WELL! Hearing Father’s homily yesterday at Mass aligned with the reflection on day 1 of the book.
At His crucifixion Jesus also says “I thirst” (John 19:38). When Jesus asks for a drink, what is He really thirsty for?
Father began his homily yesterday with the country and western song “Looking for Love”. If you know the song, you know the chorus “Looking for love in all the wrong places.” First I had to chuckle but then I could relate to the Samaritan woman in the reading.
What is Jesus thirsty for? What are we thirsty for?
Jesus thirsts for Us – our Love, our Love for Him and our Love towards one another, the body of the Church. Because we were created for relationship, we also thirst for love.
In the book “I Thirst,” Joseph Langford writes about the symbolism present in this gospel reading. The well is “our search for love,” where we come for comfort. When the Samaritan woman approaches the well, Jesus is there waiting, tired and thirsty.
In the midst of all our sinfulness, all our life circumstances, where is Jesus?
Right there, waiting for us, thirsting for our love.
I think the key point for me in this reflection was the symbolism of the Samaritan woman. What Joseph Langford states is that she represents our “human poverty”. She is the symbolism of our isolation, the emptiness we feel when we are separated from God and searching for love in other things in our lives. In our self-centered thirsts, we look in all the wrong places for a love that only Jesus can quench.
I personally struggle with feeling love in very key relationships in my life. I know some of that comes from past relationships that involved a distorted view of love. In my human poverty, I desire love greatly. As I read this reflection and heard Father’s homily, it hit a hot spot for me that my desire is really to quench Jesus’ thirst and for Him to satiate mine. Then will I truly be satisfied. Instead of going to the well in search of love in things the world says I should be searching for to satisfy my desires of being loved, Jesus gives me the gift of Himself to draw living water which will always satisfy. With this living water, not only am I satisfied through His love for me but I am also satisfying His thirst through my love to others as a member of His Church.
“Our aim is to satiate the infinite thirst of God, not just for a glass of water, but for souls. Souls are immortal, precious to God.” Mother, St. Teresa of Calcutta
In the wake of the Coronavirus, I think this is a powerful message. It is in the midst of fear, disaster and need that we satisfy Jesus’ love the greatest. In these times, it’s how we reach out to our neighbors in prayer and love. It’s our Christian faith that reveals to the world the power of our God, which in turn quenches His thirst. As Mother, St. Teresa once said, “our aim is to satiate the infinite thirst of God, not just for a glass of water, but for souls. Souls are immortal, precious to God.”
I invite you to ask yourself, what are you thirsting for and what is the source of the well you are drawing from? Are you quenching Jesus’ thirst? Are you satiating your own thirst through His infinite love?