An Outcast No More

John 4:28-29
The woman then left her waterpot, and went her way into the city, and saith to the men, Come, see a man, which told me all things that ever I did: is not this the Christ?

This woman was probably the definition of an outcast. She didn’t have much going for her and would not have been looked up to, especially if everyone knew all about her situation. In fact, she was probably ridiculed and ashamed. And on top of that, she was a Samaritan, another reason for her to be hated and cast out. What a joy it must have been, then, to this woman for Jesus to know all these things about her, the worst things about her, and not immediately cast her off in condemnation, but instead offer her His love, His forgiveness, and the precious gift of living water.

And though Jesus told her plainly that He was the Messiah, it was the fact that He knew her so intimately and personally, the fact that He knew exactly what burdened her and what to do to fix it without her even having to tell Him that proved to her that Jesus was the Christ. And that is what drew others to come to Jesus, as well, because that is what she proclaimed to everyone she could tell.

It may not be a comfortable thought to think that a man had come who knew everything about her. That may seem like an odd thing that would draw people to Jesus since we try to hide from our deepest, darkest secrets and the things that we would fear to share with anyone. But it is the fact that Jesus knows all about us and loves us in spite of all of our darkness, all of our weaknesses, our shame, our mistakes that makes the difference. Because He knows all these things about us, but He doesn’t use them against us. Instead, He uses them to draw us to Himself and offers to us salvation and a new way of living.

A personal testimony can often make a bigger impact in someone else’s heart than stating a set of facts. And if a woman who went to the well in solitude could then turn around and seek out others to tell about Jesus, may we, too, have a boldness to share our testimony with all those we encounter. May we share our stories of what Jesus has done for us and then invite others to come and meet Him for themselves. And may we follow Jesus’ example of reaching out in love to even those we would consider outcasts.

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