Summary: In John 4 a lonely by a well meets Jesus and her life is never the same again.

If You Only Knew

Jesus, His Encounters (2)

I Am Jesus – Message 30

Video Clip Sermon Spice, ‘Lonely People’

In his book, ‘Six Hours One Friday’ Max Lucado writes about a tombstone he came across in a small cemetery in San Antonio. The stone marks the grave of a lady named Grace Smith. No date of birth is listed, no date of death. Just the names of her 2 husbands, and the following epitaph:

Sleeps, but rests not

Loved, but was loved not

Tried to please, but pleased not.

Died as she lived alone…

QUESTION – how would you like those 20 words to describe your life?

Sleeps, but rests not

Loved, but was loved not

Tried to please, but pleased not.

Died as she lived alone…

[Tim, Laurie]… THINK – about what would it be like to live such a life…? What would it be like to;

• Sleep… but never rest…

• To love… but never be loved (I MEAN - what would it be like; to have all your attempts at love - turned down, ignored, rejected, pushed aside, unnoticed)

• Try to please people and always fall short to never measure up, to never be good enough… “How many times do I have to tell you?” “Why can’t you do anything right?” “You’ll never amount to anything?” AND – what would be like to live to please at least please yourself and fail to do even that..

• AND FINALLY – what would it be like to live alone, to be a lone, to have no one, to know no one, to be known by no one. AND – what would it be like to die alone (no loved one at your bedside, no one to shed a tear at your funeral)

THIS WEEK - as I reflected on Grace Smith’s epitaph. I wondered who wrote it. Were those 20 words written by Grace herself. Man. if she did write them, that would be pretty sad. OR – did someone else (a family member, friend, funeral director) write them to summarize her life?

AND THEN – I began to wonder about how many other people there are in our world, in our community (maybe even in our church) who feel pretty much the same way… (Alone, tired, weary, unloved, unworthy, unsatisfied). I – began to wonder how many people are walking the streets of our world who feel that life has passed them by. LONELY PEOPLE- who unless someone intervenes or something happens will find that Grace Smith’s epitaph becomes the summary of their life…

TODAY – as we continue looking at some of the encounters that Jesus had with ordinary people like you and me…we are going to look at an encounter that Jesus had with a women who is without a doubt the Grace Smith of the New Testament. A woman who felt that life had passed her by. A single woman whose many attempts at love had left her dry.

NOW – it’s an encounter that just about everyone in this room has looked at before (probably more than once). AND – because of that your first reaction when I ask you to turn to John chapter 4 (might be)… Been there. Read that. Know that. Heard it all before. ‘SO STEVE – whoa re you talking about next week.’

BUT LISTEN – no matter how many times you have looked at this encounter before…NO – matter how many times you’ve heard someone teach on it… THE TRUTH – is IF your heart is open and your mind is eager… God WILL say something to you this VERY morning (August 21, 2005).

ALRIGHT – go ahead and turn to John chapter 4. WE – are going to read a huge chunk of that chapter… AND – as you are turning there… I NEED – to set up the text and give you a little background information.

AS – John chapter 4 opens up Jesus is about to move His ministry from Judea to Galilee… AND – he is making this move for a couple of reasons; 1# - because things are getting pretty hot in Judea and He is not ready for a head on confrontation with the Jewish leaders (just yet)… AND #2 – because it is time for Him to bring his message to those in Galilee… Remember what Isaiah said about the Messiah’s ministry in Isaiah 9:1; “…there will be a time in the future when Galilee of the Gentiles, which lies along the road that runs between the Jordan and the sea, will be filled with glory.” - Is 9:1

AND ANOTHER – piece of information that we need to understand (because of the person Jesus is going to encounter in John 4) is both the relationship between Jews and Samaritans… AND – between men and woman.

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Christopher Wright

commented on Jul 29, 2015


Steve Malone

commented on Aug 6, 2015


Jim Wyche

commented on Jul 20, 2016

Brother Steve, I went looking for sermons on "Knowing Jesus", not for a congregation but for myself. Out of all the sermons here, the Holy Spirit led me to yours. Through your presentation I have been so blessed. Thank you. Jim

Steve Malone

commented on Sep 7, 2016

Thanks for the encouragement Jim, God is good.

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