"Therefore the Samaritan woman said to Him, 'How is it that You, being a Jew, ask me for a drink since I am a Samaritan woman?' (For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.)
"Jesus answered and said to her, 'If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, 'Give Me a drink,' you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.'
"She said to Him, 'Sir, You have nothing to draw with and the well is deep; where then do You get that living water? You are not greater than our father Jacob, are You, who gave us the well, and drank of it himself and his sons and his cattle?'
"Jesus answered and said to her, 'Everyone who drinks of this water will thirst again; but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall never thirst; but the water that I will give him will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life.'
"The woman said to Him, 'Sir, give me this water, so I will not be thirsty nor come all the way here to draw'" (John 4:9-15, NASB).
There is something about a great storyteller. It is a special talent, I think, but then again, we can learn some things from them. For example, Dr. Seuss tends to stir up curiosity and the imagination of his readers as he gives characters names such as a "Wump" and "Mr. Gump," and then writes about a cat in a hat and a fox in socks. These words have kept many reading in search of just who those characters are.
In John 4:9-15, we can read how Jesus sparked this woman's interest at the well as he used the term "living" water. I can see her wondering something like, "What's this crazy man talking about?" She decided to ask this man what He meant.
Through this, Jesus got the opportunity to share about eternal life found through Him, the Messiah, who was sent by God. This "living" water metaphor helps explain how there is something that can satisfy us more than water. Water for the body is needed, but God satisfies and brings life on a deeper and a longer-lasting level. Words like "thirst" and "springing up" helped Him explain how much greater this water satisfies than physical water from a well.
By using the word, "living," Jesus invited curiosity into His conversation. Today, we can help draw others into the story of God by using metaphors, examples or even using ourselves as a curious character. We can speak truthfully and still use vivid, relevant words to help explain the amazing, saving grace we have found in Christ Jesus, our Lord.
Study based on the workbook HeartCall: Women Sharing God's Heart (Jaye Martin, 1999).