• Angie

"Rabbi, why take this road through Samaria? Surely we will make good enough time taking the usual route," yelled James from behind attemptin to keep pace with his brother John.

The Rabbi looked and smiled noticing his friends racing behind him, the smiles in each celebration as one cotinued to get ahead of the other. James noticed the lack of repsonse from their Rabbi and knew that if he needed an answer it would not have been withheld.

Matthew, weary from the walk already, says "Yes teacher, surely nothing good has ever come out of Samaria, we should do our best to move quickly through so we won't be delayed in our work."

"What would you know of good work, tax collector?" Peter joked with a laugh. At this Matthew shrunk back in shame and Peter paused and put his hand on Matthew's shoulder, "You did great work in Judea brother."

Matthew gave Peter a smile and they both continued on shoulder to shoulder following their Rabbi. They may not undertand all that he does but they do trust him. They believe in his cause because their Rabbi believed in them first.

The Rabbi listened to the banter and the laughter of his friends as they folled him. Their laughter was something to rejoice in. He had watched them grow so much in such a short amount of time and they would continue to grow in order to complete the work ahead of them. The Rabbi himself was preparing for an appointment which he Father has made for him, an appointment that he could not miss.

It was earlier that morning when the Rabbi woke up to pray. The other's were sleeping so he sought out a quiet place where he would not be disturbed. The Rabbi's heart was heavy with mission and each day that he awoke was another day cloer to the reason he was send to this earth. Yet each day his heart was full of compassion for the peopel around him.

"Father, thank you for this new day and the mighty work you are doing."

God replied, "My faithful son, the religious leaders of this are have heard that you are making more disciples than John the Baptist. They are beginning their plot against you. The time has not

yet come, but you will need to return to Galilee."

"I will gather everyone and we will leave at once," the Rabbi responded.

"Make sure you take the road through Samaria to Jacob's Well in the city of Sychar," God instructed further.

"Father, you would like me to go through Samaria?" the Rabbi asked.

"Yes, I have heard the cries of my daughter. She is worried that I have forgotten her. Crying out for the promise I made to her father Abram," God said.

In reply the Rabbi declared, "Let your will be done here Father, that all that was lost be returned to you."

The Rabbi rested on those words, he would not let anyone be taken from from him because he loved them. And today that love would take him through Samaria to Jacob's Well to find what was lost and return it to God.

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  • Angie

Good Lord it is hot, but that is not surprising seeing as the sun is near the top of the sky. If I time this right, I should be able to reach the well about noon, Sarah thought as she started her journey to Jacob's well.

As Sarah was walking she was trying not to pay attention to the foot prints in the sand. For you see each delicate foot print in the sand from Sychar reminded her of some not so delicate faces that were accompanied with not so delicate words that were targeted at her. Words that would echo and rattle through her ears like:

"Watch out for Sarah, she is the killer of men" or

"There goes Sarah, hunting men for homes."

She shuttered at the thought. Those foot prints mocked her, confirming that she would never be good enough to walk beside someone telling her she would never find the person that would be willing to stay.

The sun continued to rise and with it the heat rose as well. Her empty jar becoming heavier with every step. Then she thought to herself, Ben will be angry with me if I don't make this a quick trip. He doesn't like that I have started to retrieve the water later in the day. He keeps insisting that my gratefulness for our situation should be enough to get through the interactions with the other women. He says I should count myself lucky he took a woman like me in. Maybe he is...right... I seem to be a curse to everyone I know even when I am trying my hardest. I just can't seem to get it right.

Sarah continued on her walk dropping her jar from one hand to another allowing it to hit her hip as she walked in rhythmn. With her free hand she wiped the sweat from abover her brow and with this noticed how rough her hands had become. She was no longer the young woman who looked at the world as one full of great opportunities. And this made her recall her past. She should be lucky with her father dead and his household sold off to pay his debts, she had not a penny to her name.

When she married her first husband Jake, they married for love and it didn’t hurt that he was the first-born son to a well-off family. He was her promise of a secure and happy life but this would just be the first step to a life of uncertainty and disappointment. She still remembers the day she lost him, her heart had broken in to a million pieces and little did she know there were a million more pieces left to brake. Jake’s father was so distraught and was convinced that Sarah had brought a curse upon their home, how could his handsome, strong, brilliant boy die so young and so suddenly. He never liked that Jake had married below him and because Sarah did not have any children it was an easy decision to have her disowned as a widow and have his second son be the heir to the household.

With no family, land, money, or house of her own she was forced to marry quickly and without a real opportunity to mourn Jake. The other women thought it was scandalous and disrespectful, but it’s easy to think that way when you have food on your plate.

Sarah stopped for a second to catch her breath, she looked up at the sun and wiped the sweat of her brow.

The well should be completely empty by now, this isn’t so bad a walk I guess it gives me time to be alone. This is Jacob’s Well after all maybe God will meet me there like he met Jacob at Beersheba, maybe he will free me from this place.

“Ha,” she laughed, and looked around forgetting no one was around.

Her own laugh started to give her the company she was craving so she continued to engage with the thought.

I mean I know I am a Samaritan, and the Jews might deny it but technically Abraham is my father too. Do I not have claim to God’s promises, do I not have a place in his covenant? What makes us so differently from the Jews? Why am I not invited to the table?

My father used to tell me stories of a promised Messiah, a messenger from God will make all things right again. Is that Messiah not mine? Are my mistakes too big for God?

Sarah continued to walk but this time with a little bit more confidence, she was walking faster to Jacob’s Well.

My father has died and his household rejected me, but this is Jacob’s well given to his children then, given to the Samaritan’s. This is my inheritance and I know that God has not forgotten us, I have a hope.

Just as soon as Sarah’s confidence had come it was deflected, she was close enough now to the well to see she had not timed it correctly, there was someone there. She started drudging through the sand, who could it be at this hour? And the closer she got her heart began to sink she could tell by the clothes alone this would not be a welcomed encounter, it was a Jewish Man.

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