Reading Time: 5 Minutes
How to transform a city
John 4.27 – Just then his disciples came. They were astonished that he was speaking with a woman, but no one said, “What do you want?” or, “Why are you speaking with her?”
28 Then the woman left her water jar and went back to the city. She said to the people, 29 “Come and see a man who told me everything I have ever done! He cannot be the Messiah, can he?” 30 They left the city and were on their way to him.
Jesus’ close followers bought food in the city, but apparently didn’t think to tell the people what they knew about Jesus or where they could find him.
On the other hand, the woman left her water jar and ran to tell the people about Jesus.
I think the church where I attend is remarkable. I am occasionally asked how the church became like it is. My response is that God worked a joyous miracle in some people and they act just like this woman. They can’t wait to tell others what God’s love did for them.
Loving Jesus, but blind to human need.
John 4.31-38 – Meanwhile the disciples were urging him, “Rabbi, eat something.” 32 But he said to them, “I have food to eat that you do not know about.” 33 So the disciples said to one another, “Surely no one has brought him something to eat?” 34 Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to complete his work.
35 Do you not say, ‘Four months more, then comes the harvest’? But I tell you, look around you, and see how the fields are ripe for harvesting. 36 The reaper is already receiving wages and is gathering fruit for eternal life, so that sower and reaper may rejoice together. 37 For here the saying holds true, ‘One sows and another reaps.’ 38 I sent you to reap that for which you did not labor. Others have labored, and you have entered into their labor.”
John has very strong words for people who say they love God but dislike other people. He wrote, “Those who say, ‘I love God,’ and hate their brothers or sisters, are liars; for those who do not love a brother or sister whom they have seen, cannot love God whom they have not seen” (1 John 4.20).
Could it be that John learned this truth by living with Jesus every day for three years. John and the other disciples clearly were interested in Jesus being able to be refreshed after along trip. However, they seemingly had no interest in the Samaritan villagers.
Their behavior was evident by the fact that they only saw the villagers as people who could supply their needs for food. They didn’t tell the Samaritans where they could find Jesus and how blessed their lives would be by meeting him.
I relate to Jesus’ followers here. I am blessed to be a friend of Jesus, but often go about my business in life and fail to have any interest at all in helping the people I meet in the normal course of a day to get acquainted with Jesus.
Rolling out the red carpet of the city for Jesus
John 4.39-42 – Many Samaritans from that city believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I have ever done.”
40 So when the Samaritans came to him, they asked him to stay with them; and he stayed there two days.
41 And many more believed because of his word. 42 They said to the woman, “It is no longer because of what you said that we believe, for we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this is truly the Savior of the world.”
The woman got the ball rolling, but the town’s folk took it another step. They asked Jesus to stay in their city. What would happen, if multitudes invited Jesus to come to the cities where they live? What if part of our prayer life was to invite Jesus to settle down where we live, work and play? Why don’t we try it?
Don’t miss the last word of the villagers experience. Samaritans, people believed to be very distant from God, learned first-hand that Jesus is the Savior of the world. Isn’t that just like God?
Dear God, thank you for another picture of your amazing love. Please show us how we can roll out the red carpet for your coming to our families and our city. Thank you again for your grace.
Thank you for reading real-voices.com. Please join in the above prayer that asks God to come to your family and your city. Let’s see what God does.