Jennifer’s Passage: John 4:1-21
John 4: “The Woman” at the Well (emphasis mine).
Most saw her and avoided her. They knew what she was. They’d seen her go through five husbands. Yes, five. Imagine the conversations that took place out of her earshot. “Did you hear?” “Yes, ANOTHER man!” “How could she?” “Why would she?” “Oh, you mean THAT woman!”
Which is exactly why she was found at the well drawing water at midday….and exactly why Jesus was at the well asking her for a drink and offering her His living water in the same breath.
In the midst of her pain and in spite of the circumstances, Jesus met her where she was at. Not only met her, but intentionally sought her out specifically to restore her because He knew her and loved her.
Several times in my life I have represented the community in this story by summarily judging others based on what I “saw”. I have also experienced the flip side: the judgment of others based on how they “saw” me.
The story of the Woman at the Well gives me great hope for both myself and our community as a whole because it helps me remember that God loves to meet us where we’re at; He intentionally seeks us out and brings us to Himself. Why? Because He loves us no matter what! So the next time I “see” someone, I hope I remember that “seeing” is far different from “knowing”.
Jason’s Passage: Hebrews 11:32-12:4
There is no easier place to be “doing fine” than church. In a community of brokenness, a community whose doctrine identifies us all as sinners in need of the redemptive, resurrection power of Jesus, everyone seems to be doing pretty well. I bought into that lie.
For someone growing up in the church, it’s easy to look around your Bible study class, your worship service and judge others. In my case, it wasn’t that I thought less of others, but the reverse: how could these people who appear to have it all together understand my hurts, pains, struggles, and fears? Today, I’m grateful to learn so much from brothers and sisters in Christ who humbly let their brokenness become an encouragement and vice versa.
Why David? Over the past two years in particular, I’ve learned the value of honest, intimate, and vulnerable Christian fellowship. I look at David’s relationships in a whole new light, partly because those kinds of relationships are now a transforming part of my life. David lived life with Jonathan. He took the counsel of Nathan. He had people around him, thru the best and worst of times, reminding and encouraging him to seek God, trust God, and love God. We see in 1 Samuel 22 and on that David surrounded himself with people, learned from many of them, and appears to have been very open and honest with those he led. His life was far from perfect, his sins were both subtle and spectacular, but thru it all, he engaged those around him and his relationship with God grew.
The writer of Hebrews identifies David as one of the “great cloud of witnesses” who were just like us: broken, but dependent on God and on each other. I look around my community of faith, within the Crash community and beyond, and am thankful to be running with them and not on my own.