I am not sure why they made it a competition, but the meddling of the Scribes and Pharisees were too much for him, he was not in the mood to be pitted against John, as if he didn't want to overshadow him, as if that weren't the point at all. We headed back to Galilee, which of course meant travelling through Samaria.
We moved quickly but even he could not bear the fierceness of the mid-day heat so when we came to Jacobs well we stopped, he looked so weary, and we were all hungry, so we set off into the town leaving him to rest, it seemed his heart was as weary as his feet.
We weren't gone for long, maybe an hour maybe just a little more, but when we returned he had completely changed, his face was shining and alive, all weariness seemed to have left him, he didn't even notice us at first he was so deep in conversation with the woman. We were shocked of course, we knew he often challenged conventions but to be alone with a woman, a Samaritan woman... I guess the shock must have shown on our faces, because she soon turned and ran leaving her water pot behind.
He looked at us calmly, but his face was still alight, and he smiled, I "am still thirsty" he said, and he picked up her abandoned water jar, filled it and after taking a long drink passed it to us. We unpacked the food then and sat on the ground together to eat. He took the bread and broke it, blessed it and shared it with us, and as we ate he told us of his encounter with the woman who we had so easily dismissed. Every meal with him was a holy moment.
He told us of her questions, and of his, how he'd challenged her to bring her husband, and how she had bravely told the truth. He told us of how her questions had drawn from him the image of living water, the Spirit given as a life giving spring to flow through any who asked for it. True worshippers he said were not confined to time or place, true worshippers entered into an intimate and organic relationship with the one who was the source of this life giving stream.
As he spoke it was as if living water began to flow within each one of us, we were connected to the source, deep flowed to deep, and no barriers of race, gender or creed mattered in that moment. Soon though the intimacy we were sharing was broken open, the woman returned running, and with her came people from the town, now eager to follow one they had previously shunned. He shared with them all then, taking time to teach and bless and heal. Living waters flowed, and as well tell this story they continue to all who might drink from them.