September 2, 2005

Learning to See With Jesus' Eyes

Scripture Reading — John 4:1-9, 27

1The Pharisees heard that Jesus was gaining and baptizing more disciples than John, 2although in fact it was not Jesus who baptized, but his disciples. 3When the Lord learned of this, he left Judea and went back once more to Galilee. 4Now he had to go through Samaria. 5So he came to a town in Samaria called Sychar, near the plot of ground Jacob had given to his son Joseph. 6Jacob's well was there, and Jesus, tired as he was from the journey, sat down by the well. It was about the sixth hour. 7When a Samaritan woman came to draw water, Jesus said to her, "Will you give me a drink?" 8(His disciples had gone into the town to buy food.) 9The Samaritan woman said to him, "You are a Jew and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink?" (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans.) — 

His disciples returned and were surprised to find him talking with a woman. John 4:27

Eyesight is a precious gift. My mother-in-law is suffering from macular degeneration, and her visual world has become quite dark. Reading or seeing the details of a grandchild's face is very difficult for her. Our Scripture reading for today shows that many of us who have been in the church a long time may need to pay attention to our spiritual eyes. We might not be seeing what Jesus wants us to see.

Jesus took his twelve disciples through a region where Jews didn't normally travel. There was long-standing prejudice between Jews and Samaritans. These two groups often distrusted and hated each other. Jesus sat by a well while his disciples went to a nearby town for food. When they returned, they saw him talking to a woman about spiritual things, and they were amazed.

Jesus teaches his disciples a lesson here about seeing. Although they likely passed right by the Samaritan woman on their way to town, it appears they never really saw her. It's amazing what we don't see when we're not looking. They missed the harvest field that was ripe before their eyes.

Ask God today to open your eyes to see people with the eyes of Jesus. Ask to be able to see them with eyes of compassion and love. There isn't one person you will see today who isn't deeply loved by God.


Lord, give us your eyes today so that we may see people as you see them. Help us to respond to the opportunities you give us to share your love in ordinary ways. Amen.


Devotion topics: Life, Christian Life, Missions