One of my uncles ran a large ranch south of San Antonio. We’d visit often and tramp around on the scraggly terrain amongst mesquite trees and prickly pear cactus. One day my dad called my brother and I over to him and issued this ominous command, “Don’t take so much as a step away from here until you know why I called you here.” My brother and I stood staring at one another for what seemed like an eternity and then suddenly my brother said, “Do exactly what Dad said,” and he walked away. I was confused and more than a little irritated that some sort of joke was being played on me. Stay tuned for the rest of the story. First, a word from our Sponsor.
Are you familiar with the story of “the woman at the well” in John 4? To sum it up, Jesus found himself alone at the town well with a woman… how to say this… a woman who was matrimonially ambivalent – she had been married five times previously and now was just shacking up with a guy. You can read the whole story at John 4:1-30. The key part for follow of Jesus is verse 27:
At this point His disciples came, and they were amazed that He had been speaking with a woman, yet no one said, “What do You seek?” or, “Why do You speak with her?”
Even Jesus’ closest companions wondered about His motives in talking with this woman. But as you read the story from beginning, you see that Jesus had two things in mind – offering the woman salvation and bringing revival to her village.
And that brings me back to the ranch. Eventually, and I mean after many agonizing minutes, I looked down and saw the cutest little baby rattlesnake right between my feet. It was a baby and my dad knew it couldn’t have so much as bitten through my tennis shoes. The point he was making was there are snakes everywhere and I needed to learn to look for them. I was lost in my world, throwing rocks and whacking cactus with sticks. My dad saw the world more completely.
Jesus’ disciples saw the woman for what she appeared to be – a tart, a slut, a loss. Jesus saw the woman for what she was – a precious soul for whom He was willing to go to the cross. Followers of Jesus learn to see the world the way He saw it.
Clark H Smith