Saturday, December 12th

Saturday, December 12th

Many Samaritans from the village believed in Jesus because the woman had said, “He told me everything I ever did!” When they came out to see him, they begged him to stay in their village. So he stayed for two days, long enough for many more to hear his message and believe. Then they said to the woman, “Now we believe, not just because of what you told us, but because we have heard him ourselves. Now we know that he is indeed the Savior of the world.” John 4:39-42

Today's thoughts from today's verses:

Yesterday's Devotional concluded with a prayer for this Christmas season. The prayer was based on the words, "after seeing him." The shepherds had found the place where Jesus was born and as he laid before them in the lowly manger of a Bethlehem stable, they encountered the "Savior of the world." We asked that the lives of God's people everywhere be filled with "seeing him" experiences of worship. And then we asked that the world be blessed with what happens "after" all the "seeing him" experiences of his people all around the world. Today's verses are a great follow up for the requests of this prayer being realized in our own lives.

We see in our passage the "after seeing him" experience of a Samaritan woman who had encountered Jesus Christ when she came to draw water from a well. "After seeing him" the woman tells the story of her encounter with Jesus Christ to the people of her village. Her story leads to many Samaritans from her village encountering ("seeing him") Jesus Christ for themselves. What a thrill for the Samaritan woman to hear them say, “Now we believe, not just because of what you told us, but because we have heard him ourselves. Now we know that he is indeed the Savior of the world.”

Knowing that Jesus is the Savior of the world is the conclusion reached by all who encounter Christ in a genuine "seeing him" experience. These are the ones for whom the Savior of the world becomes the Savior of their souls. The Savior brings about peace with God for them and fills their souls with the peace of God. They go forward with "seeing him" in the experience of daily "communion" with him. Their initial and ongoing encounters with Christ affect them so deeply, that they readily share their story with others. They truly are recipients and agents of peace on earth through Jesus Christ.

When the Samaritan woman was in the middle of her initial encounter with Jesus, he said these words to her, "But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers" (John 4:23). This is what we are talking about: being the true worshipers God seeks. Ones who are true worshipers of God are ones who are so deeply affected by their initial and ongoing encounters with Christ that they readily share their story with others. These are the ones who are pleasing to God because their lives bring glory to God in highest heaven as recipients and agents of peace on earth.

Today's prayer response from today's thoughts:

Putting together you own prayer response to God would be a great way of concluding our week of "unwrapping" the original Christmas event and the full meaning of Christ's presence with us.

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