Third Sunday of Lent 2013
I take medications for high blood pressure and diabetes and one of the side effects is dry mouth and thirst. When I reflect on this Lenten gospel of the woman at the well, I am feeling thirsty now and when I take some water I will feel renewed and refreshed. There are times in my week when I am running on empty-both emotionally and spiritually. I voice that I don’t have enough time to pray and complain about the small tasks of ministry.
We who engage in ministry must seek a way to find a deep wellspring from within where we can draw living water. There have to be ways where we refresh the whole person in mind, body, spirit, and relationships and simultaneously hold on to fidelity in ministry. There are many resources around and within us and yet we thirst by not drawing water from our well. There is a need to discover the level of thirst so that we can find the refreshment we need from the abundant living water of God.
This Gospel story of the encounter of Jesus and another Samaritan is relevant for all of us. No matter who we are, young or old, hears a voice deep within us that cries “Give me a drink.” My thirst for acceptance, inclusion, love, and respect asks you to not judge me on the sheer externals of colour, religion, education, sexual orientation, or appearance. It is because Jesus treats this woman her with sensitivity that she can be honest with him. She is allowed to be herself without fears of being pre-judged or condemned. All of us have worn masks to impress others that we are strong, independent, and self-sufficient. The truth of the matter was that inside we crave the acceptance and encouragement of family and friends. That occasional encouraging word, including someone at an event, showing small signs of respect for one another can produce positive effects- even resurrections of hope on a daily basis. It is within us to help one another to encounter Jesus. We can make this Lent a time of inclusion, of welcoming someone who is or who has become a stranger to us.
Questions for reflection
- What is the state of my refreshment today? Am I thirsty or satisfied or somewhere in between?
- What am I thirsting for? What are the things that quench my thirsts?
- Where have I found living water in the past?
- Toward what wellspring is God drawing me?
- What practices do I need to draw living water?
– Helen Martinez, PBVM