In a “chance meeting” with Jesus the Samaritan woman comes face to face with eternity and the Christ who holds the key to everything for which her soul cries out. And having met this “lover of her soul” she hurries back to her village and tells everyone that Messiah has come. This led to a two-day revival in which her hometown was changed.
Now, while many believed because of what she told them, many more believed because after hearing about Jesus, they just had to check him out personally. The “woman at the well” was an unlikely evangelist, but an evangelist nonetheless!
What makes an evangelist?
I’ve known those with that something different in them which we’d call the “spiritual gift of evangelism”. I’m thinking Billy Graham here, as well as some not so well-known. Some were ordained ministers, while some were not part of the religious system; they were simply crying out from the wilderness like John the Baptist. But there was just something different about them. The difference, I believe, is not something you learn, or even a talent with which you were born; it is rather God’s choosing – anointing for God’s purposes.
Apart from those given a special anointing are those of us who speak up because Christ has so impacted our lives, we cannot stay silent. It makes little difference in evangelism if you can speak two words without stuttering (remember Moses?). It makes little difference if you know the 5 tenets of Calvinism, or the Westminster Confession by heart, or even the verses that make up the Romans Road Gospel tract. Genuine evangelism is where a changed heart (like the woman at the well) meets a ready heart (like the woman’s neighbors)…and the conversation begins. What happens then is in Christ’s hands…and that is where evangelism is most effectively laid.
The woman in our story was an unlikely evangelist; she had no tent, Gospel band or wavy Pompadour hair style; she wasn’t even a person of good reputation. In fact, meeting with Jesus at the well in the middle of the day indicated she went there to draw water without the other women because she was a social pariah – unfit for well-bred company.
And, just maybe, that’s the key here – this woman knew who would really accept her with all her flaws, checkered history and downright sinfulness. She could recognize her need for salvation and cleansing – and she had no pride standing in the way. This was a woman with very little to lose, and heaven to gain.
At a church I pass regularly the sign recently said:
When you’re down to nothing, God’s up to something.
That’s evangelism….God up to something.
For You, Today…
You aren’t an evangelist? No white suit, microphone and tear-jerking dog-story?
It’s okay; God only needs you to be you, if you’ve got a heart like that woman.