Scripture Reflection . . .
Third Sunday of Lent
First Reading: Exodus 17:3-7
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 95 “If today you hear God’s voice, harden not your hearts.”
Second Reading: Romans 5:1-8
Gospel: John 4:5-42
Today’s scriptures remind me of a recent homily in which the Homilist reflected on Jesus’ words on the cross, “I thirst” and our call to listen to what it is that people are thirsting for in the world today.
The First Reading from Exodus describes the people’s despair in the desert and their cry for water. The Gospel of the Samaritan woman takes place at a well and Jesus’ uses this opportunity to speak about the Living Water that quenches the deeper thirst – the thirst for wholeness, healing, mercy, love – the thirst for eternal life.
The Responsorial Psalm encourages us not harden our hearts but to listen. Perhaps because human nature needs the reminder to listen to our own deep thirst which in turn allows us to open our hearts and ears to the thirst of others. Most likely we share the same thirst as that of the Samaritan woman.
In Our Lives as Sisters of The Holy Redeemer . . .
The Readings also connect with our spirituality as Sisters of The Holy Redeemer. Water is a meaningful symbol since the beginning of the Congregation in Niederbronn, Alsace-Lorainne France, a region abundant with springs of thermal waters that were sought out for healing. Jesus is the source of Living Water that flows out bringing healing and wholeness to all. As Sisters we are called to drink from that water with joy and share it with others, (see Isaiah 12:3). This week we have experienced this Living Water in so many ways. To name a few . . .
The coming together of our General Council in Germany as they continue to lead us in identifying the thirst of people in the world today.
The abundant snow fall that brings water to Earth – out of this cold barrenness new life will soon spring.
The return of 2nd Grade students to the school garden as they planted seeds for the greenhouse.
The arrival of baby chicks and a leprechaun on St. Patrick’s Day – talk about joyfully drawing from the Living Water!
Celebrating the Feast of St. Joseph with a Congregation of Sisters of St. Joseph from Kenya. There was much joyful singing and generous sharing of food.
In Your Life . . .
From the Eucharist Prayer today:
“For when [Jesus] asked the Samaritan woman for water to drink, he had already created the gift of faith within her and so ardently did he thirst for her faith, that he kindled in her the fire of divine love.”
Perhaps you will feel invited to reflect upon your own deep thirst or longing. What is your deepest desire? As you reflect on this, know that God desires this for you as well. How do you know your thirst? It may be a connection with something you hear. It may be what gets you up each day, or gives you strength to keep going when you are challenged. It may be a curiosity to learn more. It is probably where you experience the most joy, when you can be most yourself, and most loving.
Blessings on your week!