This week, I had the opportunity to try something new…baking a gluten-free, dairy-free, dessert. I have been cooking and baking without dairy for years, but gluten-free? This was something I had never attempted before. However, I knew it was something I wanted to become familiar with since so many of my friends and their children are gluten-free. I read some articles and blog posts about different types of flours, talked to friends about it, and found a couple of recipes to try. After several attempts, I finally created a new recipe for shortbread cookies and one for lemon bars. When I brought samples of these desserts to some of my friends, I held my breath in anticipation of their opinion. I was so relieved and filled with joy when their faces lit up with excitement over the nuggets of deliciousness. As I prepared another batch of lemon bars later that night, I thought about the woman at the well.
Jesus was traveling from Judea to Galilee, going through Samaria. The first thing that stands out to me is the fact that Jesus went to Samaria. At the time, Jews would intentionally avoid Samaria since they despised it and saw no value in the Samaritan people. Jesus made the decision to travel through Samaria to minister to the people there. Sometime around midday, Jesus stopped at Jacob’s well to rest when a woman came to draw water. This is interesting since going to collect water from the well would have occurred earlier in the day and was viewed as a social event amongst women. This woman was there in the heat of the noonday sun when she knew no one else would be there. She was there at this time most likely out of shame and guilt for having five husbands and being with a man who wasn’t her husband. Jesus already knew this when he said,
“You have correctly said, ‘I don’t have a husband,’” Jesus said. “For you’ve had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have said is true.” John 4:17-18
She immediately knew Jesus wasn’t just another man stopping at the well for a drink. She thought he was a prophet at first, but is then told he is the Messiah for whom they were waiting for.
The woman said to him, “I know that the Messiah is coming. When he comes, he will explaining everything to us.” Jesus told her, “I, the one speaking to you, am he.” John 4:25-26
Earlier in the chapter, Jesus told her that he was the living water,
Jesus said, “Everyone who drinks from this water will get thirsty again. But whoever drinks from the water that I will give him will never get thirsty again. In fact, the water I will give him will become a well of water springing up in him for eternal life.” John 4:13-14
Jesus was telling this woman that not was the way she was living was leaving her thirsty, but also she needed to try a new way of life that could only be found through him. This woman was continuing in her old ways until her conversation with Jesus at Jacob’s well. After her salvation, she then went back to the town and began telling anyone who would listen about Jesus.
Through this one conversation and her trying something new by putting her faith in Jesus, she was changed and many others in Samaria would follow. While my trying something new with baking isn’t as transformative as this woman’s salvation, it shows me to step out of my comfort zone and try something new because you never know what will happen as a result.