Leave your jar

John 4 tells the story of Jesus’ unlikely conversation with a Samaritan woman at Jacob’s well. It was an unusual interaction because: 1) she was a Samaritan and Jews did not talk to Samaritans; and 2) she was a woman and Jewish men certainly did not associate with Samaritan women.

Jesus reveals Himself to be the long anticipated Messiah through the metaphor of water. The woman had come to the well in the middle of the day, presumably to avoid interactions like these, to draw water. She was flawed, you see, like you and me. She’d had five husbands and was currently living with yet another man. Jesus’ response was to offer her a new life, not condemnation.

13 Jesus replied, “Anyone who drinks this water will soon become thirsty again. 14 But those who drink the water I give will never be thirsty again. It becomes a fresh, bubbling spring within them, giving them eternal life.” (John 4:13-14)

Although I’ve studied this chapter before, the woman’s response struck me this time. In fact, it chastised me. When she realized that Jesus truly offered living water, that He was indeed the Messiah, here’s what she did:

The woman left her water jar beside the well and ran back to the village, telling everyone. (John 4:28)

She left behind the container for the water that could not sustain her and RAN to share the good news. The Messiah has arrived! Come and see!

I was disappointed in myself because I also know the Gospel, but I do very little running and sharing. More sitting and, well, sitting… If you also struggle with sharing the good news of our salvation through belief in Jesus’ sacrificial death and resurrection, do this:

Ask God for one person with whom you can share your story.

You don’t need to be a Bible scholar to spread the Gospel, you just need to share your own experience. “I used to be… and then I met Jesus.”

Leave your jar. Tell your story. You won’t regret it. Happy 2018!





About Tony Schmitz

Tony Schmitz received his BS in Mechanical Engineering from Temple University in 1993, his MS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Florida in 1996, and his PhD in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Florida in 1999. He is a mechanical engineering professor at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.
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