The Living Water that Jesus offers is so much more than just a drink to quench our thirst. Our encounter with Jesus Christ, son of the Living God, who takes away the sins of the world is at the heart of this week’s message. How do we respond to His invitation to drink the Living Water He provides? What is it that we must do to live the life He desires for us? As we continue through Lent, let us reflect on the merciful love and salvation that Christ brings to each of us.
Catechesis At Home – Third Sunday of Lent – Year A
REFLECTION – He Gives Us Living Water
The theme this week is life-giving water. The first reading relates the story of the children of Isreal in the desert, brought out of Egypt into the wilderness. They are parched, they have no water. They cry out to Moses, who intercedes for them to God, who provides water from a rock. This is miraculous yet the people quickly take the water and not so far along their journey forget God’s goodness and sin against Him. (This happens a lot in the desert and as a consequence, they have to wander for 40 years and suffer more.) Here we are with abundant water in our homes…how often do we thank God for that? How often are we grateful for the technology that God allows us to invent and build? Do we recognize His goodness and mercy?
In the Gospel, Jesus offers so much more than just water to quench our thirst. He offers to the Samaritan woman and each of us the Living Water of salvation. We see in this story Jesus as Merciful Judge and Redeemer. He knows our faults, sins, and failings. He loves us anyway. He offers us not only forgiveness but a means to live with Him in heaven for all eternity. This is the water of Baptism. We are given salvation through the action of Jesus’ willing sacrifice on the Cross, but it is through washing in the Living Water of Baptism that we are granted the divine life, the spiritual gift of Grace, that brings that salvation to fruition.
The Gospel also illustrates Jesus’ mission to save ALL NATIONS, not just the Chosen People of Israel. The Samaritan woman asks why He is speaking with her, His disciples are shocked that He does. And even more shocking is the result – she becomes an Evangelist! She tells everyone in town about Jesus, she spreads the Good News unabashedly and enthusiastically. She is a model for us. We should do the same in our understanding of Christ’s love for us, we should go forth and share the Good News of salvation with all the people we know. And bring Christ to them, just as the Samaritan woman brought Christ to her town.
DISCUSSION – Are we Living Water?
When Moses struck the rock with the staff, he became a conduit of God’s grace to bring water to the people. When the Samaritan woman told her neighbors about Jesus, she became a conduit of the Living Water He offered to her. How can we be conduits of God’s grace, that living water? Do we intercede for those who doubt or struggle with their faith as Moses did? Do we talk about Jesus’ love and mercy as the Samaritan woman did? How can we do more in these two areas? Discuss with your family and friends your answers.
ACTIVITY – Living Water and Baptism
Share baptism stories this week with your children. If they were infants or young children when they were baptized, pull out the pictures, maybe their baptismal gown/outfit and candle. Talk about why you had them baptized. What did it mean for you, their parents, for them to be baptized? If you and/or your children were old enough to remember their baptism, talk about that day, what did it mean to each of you, how did it change your life?
DIG DEEPER – Other Living Water resources from Holy Owned and Operated:
Page: Lent Resources
Page: Prayer Basics
Information: Look through over 75 Lent-related teachings, discussions, and reflections
TWMWU: Feast of the Baptism of the Lord
TWMWU: God Keeps His Promises
TWMWU: The Lord Has a Place for Us
TWMWU: Jesus Died for Us
Podcast: The Sacred Role of Women in the Church – Episode 124
Podcast: Prayer During Lent – Episode 83
Podcast: Are You Saved? – Episode 136
How do you allow Jesus’ Living Water to change you?
by Beth & Kristofer Cowles
Other Help on HOO
We are called to be perfect, as we discussed last week.
So, what does being on the road to perfection look like?
If Jesus was “finished” and his ministry was “completed,” as it means when He said, “It is done,” by saying, “It is perfected” just before He died on the Cross, He must have walked a road to perfection.
And so must we.
In this episode we discuss that concept, in terms of what we are doing and how we respond to the call for our life.
It’s a simple concept, and a difficult task, but we have the example of Our Lord which, from the proper perspective, is not an impossible example to follow and exemplify.