Oh My, How Rude

A Samaritan woman came to draw water, and Jesus said to her, “Give me a drink.” – John 4:7

Not even a “please?” Oh my, how rude
to ask – demand – a drink of water here.
This well is deep, and every drop I raise
for you, you stranger, is a drop I need
to raise again, and carry to my home.
You should have brought a bucket, sir.

Not even a “please?” Oh my, how rude
to ask – demand – my time and labor here.
I’ve things to do now, Jesus, as you know
(and as you knew that woman did as well),
some obligations of which you’d approve.
What could I raise to satisfy your thirst?

Not even a “please?” Oh my, how rude
to hint – imply – that your refreshment does
much more than mine. Your invitation comes
with obligation, we both know, and yet…
And yet… I thirst, O Jesus, how I thirst.
May I be satisfied in you.

A poem/prayer based on John 4:5-42, the Revised Common Lectionary Gospel Reading for Year A, Third Sunday in Lent.

The image is Christ et la samaritaine, dessin by Guercino (ca. 1640) – http://www.culture.gouv.fr/public/mistral/joconde_fr?ACTION=CHERCHER&FIELD_2=AUTR&VALUE_2=GUERCINO IL, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=3792308.

2 thoughts on “Oh My, How Rude

  1. Another beautifully balanced poem – I love it that you start by naming what rubs the woman and us us the wrong way in the passage, the demanding rudeness of no “please”. Then you move to what is rubbing you the wrong way, again the demands: the obligations, the things to do, the implied superiority of his refreshment. Then in spite of that, you acknowledge the deep thirst and longing to be satisfied in Christ, which makes such a satisfying ending.

  2. Barbara certainly “says it all” and I agree. My favorite part of the whole story is her being the evangelist to all of those who had jeered at her life.

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