Here you are. Here. Right now. Looking at a computer screen. Another second goes by. Another moment of life. Zoom. It's gone. Oops. There goes another one. The seconds and minutes pass. An hour. A day. A week. A year. Here today. Gone tomorrow.
Here you are. Somewhere on planet Earth. What are you thinking...RIGHT NOW? Nothing? Or is it something like, "I want more"?
Yes, but more what? Good grades? Friends? Parties? Dates? Money? CDs? Clothes?
Remember when you got that thing you wanted, or finally dated that person you wanted to date...remember the feeling you had afterward? Wasn't it something like, "That didn't radically change my life like I thought it would"?
Then what do you do? Go back to the drawing board?
Maybe the experience or the thing you hoped in wasn't really what you were looking for after all. Or maybe you just need MORE of that experience or thing. More clothes. More CDs. More dates. More parties.
But even then you're left with the feeling, the plaguing thought: "I still want more."
So you want more. More of something. But you're not sure what that something is. It's like there's a constant itch in your life. The feeling that something is missing. The feeling that there must be something more IN life and something more TO life. Something more to be gotten out of life.
You think, "Am I just a round peg in a square hole? What's the deal? What's my problem?" The itch remains. And what you've experienced so far just hasn't scratched it.
Of course, this isn't something you tell your friends about. If they knew you were having these thoughts, surely they'd say, "Wow...s/he's getting WAY TOO serious about life."
But maybe they've got the same itch you do. Maybe they have the same thoughts you do. Maybe everyone is under a conspiracy of silence: "I don't want anyone to know what I'm really thinking about life."
Have you ever considered that the itch has something to do with God? Sure, God is around us, invisible to the naked eye. But God also exists in realms beyond ours. And maybe that's the dilemma. We need something beyond our realm to scratch the itch.
What if life has been set up (by God) in such a way that nothing in this realm can fully satisfy us? Even good things like a successful career, a healthy home life, getting married to someone you really love. Maybe even those things still leave the emptiness. Maybe even those things don't scratch the itch. Why? Because they're in this realm. And because we need something outside this realm to fulfill our lives.
Maybe God has designed us that way, so that we would seek him.
Think about it. If everything we ever wanted or needed could be gotten from the world we live in, then we wouldn't want God. We wouldn't feel the need for him. And maybe he feels he's too important to be overlooked.
So here you are. Right now. Needing more. Wanting more. But what if the "more" you want isn't found in this world? Then what? Where do you turn?
Click here to read a Bible story about this phenomenon.
Why does Jesus mention the relationships this woman has had with all of these men? And what has that got to do with living water?
The best way to understand the story is to first realize that Jesus speaks on two levels. He speaks of two different kinds of water. One of the waters is the natural water in the well (regular H20). The other water in question is something he calls "living water."
What's the difference between the two waters? Jesus said that regular water does not satisfy our thirst, but that living water will satisfy our thirst. So, what is the living water?
By living water, Jesus meant a relationship with God. Only a relationship with God ultimately satisfies our spiritual thirst. With that in mind, why do you think he asked the woman to call her husband and come back?
Jesus wanted her to realize the places she had been going to get her spiritual thirst met. But to no avail. She had had six men in her life, and yet she was still thirsty. None of the men in her life satisfied her deepest longings.
Our deepest needs and longings can't be met by anything in this realm. We need God, who is outside of this world, to satisfy us ultimately. We need his "living water." We need to know him and have a relationship with him. Otherwise, we will be "thirsty" in life. Thirsty in a spiritual sense.
That's why Jesus says, "whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst." Knowing him satisfies our thirst. It scratches that nagging itch we have. The itch that nothing else seems to scratch.
In the story, the woman was trying to end her spiritual thirst through relationships with men. This proved to be unsuccessful. Those "wells" didn't provide living water. Do you have any "wells" in your life?
Often people will try to satisfy their spiritual needs with things that aren't spiritual -- things such as money, popularity, being physically fit, having nice things.
Or they will try to satisfy their spiritual needs through some form of spirituality that does not involve a personal relationship with God. Again, that's a faulty "well."
The point of the story is that Jesus himself is the only reliable "well." He's the only one who can give us "living water." And the water he offers is a gift. Is it a gift you would like to receive? It will make a huge difference in your life right NOW.
"He who loves money will not be satisfied with money." (The Bible, Ecclesiastes 5:10)
"From one man he [God] made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us." (The Bible, Acts 17:26-27)
So he [Jesus] came to a town in Samaria called Sychar. Jacob's well was there, and Jesus, tired as he was from the journey, sat down by the well. It was about the sixth hour.
When a Samaritan woman came to draw water, Jesus said to her, "Will you give me a drink?" (His disciples had gone into the town to buy food.)
The Samaritan woman said to him, "You are a Jew and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink?" (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans.)
Jesus answered her, "If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water."
"Sir," the woman said, "you have nothing to draw with and the well is deep. Where can you get this living water? Are you greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well and drank from it himself, as did also his sons and his flocks and herds?"
Jesus answered, "Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life."
The woman said to him, "Sir, give me this water so that I won't get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water."
He told her, "Go, call your husband and come back."
"I have no husband," she replied. Jesus said to her, "You are right when you say you have no husband. The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have just said is quite true."