Jesus reveals His Divine Identity to the Samaritan woman at the well. Every Catholic man can grow in happiness by building the Virtue of Magnanimity so he can fulfill the heroic mission of the Baptized and by seeking the Gift of Counsel so he receive necessary help from the Holy Spirit.
3rd Week of Lent – Sunday – Cycle A – Jn 4:5-42
Returning from Judea to avoid the attacks of the Pharisees, Jesus purposefully travels to evangelize in Samaria, a prefigurement of His evangelization of the whole world. Over the centuries, Jews, who were left behind during the Assyrian Exile, intermarried with five pagan tribes and worshiped the false god Baal (“lord”, “husband”) and became Samaritans; Jews scorned Samaritans.
Jesus, tired and thirsty after walking many miles, rests in the heat of the day by Jacob’s well. The Samaritan woman is shunned by other women, perhaps due to her dissolute life of serial marriages, and comes alone at the hottest part of the day to draw water where Jesus waits. Jesus, breaking all norms (men don’t talk to strange women, Jews avoid Samaritans, rabbis do not speak with fallen women), engages the woman with supernatural insights into her life (married five times and now in an adulterous relationship), teaches her of God the Father and the Holy Spirit, and ultimately reveals He is the long-awaited Messiah. First reluctant, the Samaritan woman experiences a rapid conversion, calling Him, in turn, “sir”, “prophet”, “Christ” and “Savior of the World.” Convinced about the divinity of Jesus to the depths of her being, the woman leaves and returns with many from the village who are also converted.
Returning from the village with food, the disciples are shocked to find Jesus speaking with a Samaritan woman, but are afraid to discuss it with Him. Responding to the disciples’ concern about His hunger, Jesus says, “My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to accomplish His work”; the “work” is to “harvest” souls for eternal life in the Kingdom of God. Demonstrating the rich yield of a whole Samaritan town brought to God, Jesus both exhorts the disciples about the urgent need to evangelize the world and demonstrates how to do so.
Be awed by Jesus Christ
Reflect upon the gracious Empathy and Compassion which the Son of God demonstrates in the interaction with the Samaritan Woman: He transcends cultural prohibitions and speaks to her; He gently reveals His supernatural Knowledge of her troubled past and current sinful life to convince her of His Divinity to give her Faith; Divine Prophet, Jesus masterfully uses the beautiful metaphor of living water to offer her salvation and peace; He reveals to her that He is the Messiah, with the emotionally overwhelming statement, “I am He, the one speaking with you.”
Return to the heroic mission of the Baptized
Realize: Jesus’ beautiful allusion to the living waters which He offers the repentant, draws upon the ancient prophecy of Jerimiah (Jer 2:13; 17:13) and is fulfilled in the life-saving waters of Baptism; in Baptism, every Catholic man is called to make Our Savior known and loved.
Believe: Reflect upon the spectacular Graces freely given to you in the Sacrament of Baptism (CCC 1262-1277).
Pray: Jesus, Savior of the World, help me build the Virtue of Magnanimity (a part of Fortitude) so I continually recall and live up to my life mission to make You known and loved and to draw many to Your Holy Catholic Church.
Beg for the necessary help of the Holy Spirit
Realize: The Holy Spirit gives a Catholic man faith (CCC 683) and the Gifts and Fruits of the Spirit (CCC 1830-1832); a man cannot make it to Heaven without the Holy Spirit.
Believe: Reflect upon the Holy Spirit (CCC 683-747).
Pray: Holy Spirit, give me the Gift of Counsel so I am guided by Your supernatural help to heroically meet and overcome the small and large challenges in my life.