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.