I HAVE NO HUSBAND
(Tuesday, May 16)
How did St. John the Evangelist know, what exactly was said in the conversation of our Lord with the Samaritan Woman, when he wasn’t there, but he is the one who later recorded it in his Gospel? I think she told him. John explicitly says that the disciples did *not* ask the Lord about the conversation (Jn 4:27), so – she must have told the story. We do know that she immediately began to tell others in her own city about it. Thus, the rather long conversation of our Lord with the Samaritan Woman, – the longest recorded conversation He has with another person, – can be described as an example (to us and for us) of one woman’s account of “How I Met Jesus Christ.” It can help us recognize how it is that we, also, can “meet” Him, and come to know and believe in Him.
The conversation has several revelatory moments, at which He gradually reveals important things about Himself, but she also gradually reveals major things about herself. Her “things” are her questions or issues, while His “things” are answers to those questions or issues. The thing about her that I am thinking about this morning, is her admission, (after He pretends not to know this), that “I have no husband.” I think this was her main issue, or what she felt was her major issue, which Christ prompts her to reveal, along with her theological questions. It is reminiscent of the paralytic’s issue at the Pool of Bethesda, “I have no man,” he says, “to put me into the pool…” (Jn 5:7) The woman’s admission clears the way for our Lord to reveal Himself to her, as her Lord; as One who already knows everything about her, but in nowise despises her for any of it. Because here He is, talking to her, and opening to her a new Way that is her vocation.
This morning I’m thinking, I also have no husband. Many people “have no husband” (or wife) either by choice or otherwise. Let us not mistake the presence or absence of certain “others” in our lives for an obstacle to “meeting” Christ, entering into a conversation with Him, and drinking of His “living water.” He already knows everything about us and does not despise us for it. “Lord, give me this water” this morning, “that I may not thirst!”