Me & My Five Husbands.

The woman (at Jacob’s well) said to Him (Jesus), “Sir, give me this water so that I won’t get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water.”

He told her, “Go, call your husband and come back.”

“I have no husband,” she replied.

Jesus said to her, “You are right when you say you have no husband. The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband.” John 4:15-17a

At first read through, Jesus’ answer caused me to shake my head a bit. After the infamous ‘woman at the well’ requested (er, demanded) He give her this water so she’d no longer have to perpetually draw from the well, she didn’t stutter. Her request, hinting at exhaustion, was crystal clear.

Even if it weren’t, He knew her thoughts. 

The answer Jesus gives the woman feels misdirected. Like if I’d said, “I need another box of protein bars from the grocery store.” And you answered with, “Go, call your washing machine repair guy and come back.”

Whaa??

Um, Sir? Begging Your pardon, let me try again, louder this time.. 

Jesus didn’t misspeak. His answer was directed to the woman’s felt need. He knew her thirst, one she’d attempted to fill with men.

Plenty.

He even knew if the man she was presently living with was slated to become husband #6.

In the woman’s case, unless each of the previous husbands died off (scripture doesn’t say), having had so many exposed a deeper heart cry. One that could only be satisfied in Him.

These five guys – plus one – also exposed idolatry. If she weren’t going from husband to husband, she may have developed a thing for clay vessels or beaded leather sandals. Who knows.

Having encountered the forever and trustworthy Husband and Lover of her soul, the woman left her water jar and told others about Him. As a result of her testimony, many of the Samaritans from that town believed in Him. (John 4:28, 39) 

The woman’s husbands made me question how many ‘husbands’ I have (aka Sins of the heart, mind, and body). 

It would do me well to remember that He’s the bridegroom and I’m the Bride.

There’s no room in the marriage bed for any other(thing) aside from Jesus’, though I tend to invite other ‘men’ in various forms. They satisfy for a time. Until they don’t and I go fetch me another one. 

Idolatry. Worshipping anything or anyone else aside from God Almighty.

Another ‘husband’ isn’t the answer. Jesus is.

In Him, I have eternal life. What other ‘husband’ offers this? None. Though they make hefty, slick, polished and shiny promises that appeal to my heart’s desire, I only end up thirsty.

Only He can satisfy because He offers living water. He is Living Water.

Quite honestly, repetitive trips to the well have left me tuckered out, as well.

The good news is He’s the source and sustenance for the thirsty soul. The best news is that He always was and always will be. 

So then, husband. I’m giving you back your ring. It’s time you moved out.

 

 

 

 

 

6 Comments

  1. Great perspective, Mary! If you don’t mind, I’m going to put a link to this post at the end of my series on the woman at the well. I’d like my readers to see what you’ve seen.

  2. Martha Mullins says:

    Great perception, Mary! I tend to think much of how we seek to get our identity, our sense of importance, when truly only the Creator of these jars of clay can ever give us true identity. Thank you!

  3. Martha Mullins says:

    Great insight, Mary! I tend to think much of how we seek to get our identity, our sense of importance, when truly only the Creator of these jars of clay can ever give us true identity. Thank you!

    • Mary Felkins says:

      It should bring amazing peace to know my identity rests in Him yet onward I dig and search for alternatives. Thanks for stopping by to comment 🙂

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