“The woman said, “I know that Messiah” (called Christ) “is coming. When he comes, he will explain everything to us.” Then Jesus declared, “I, the one speaking to you—I am he” (Read the entire passage in John 4:4-26).
In one of the more fascinating conversations in Scripture, Jesus clearly declares Himself to be the Messiah to an unnamed Samaritan woman. Jesus had already ignored the existing racial/gender barriers just by speaking with her. Then He piqued her interest by offering her living water. It was another example of Jesus turning the conversation from the horizontal to the vertical . . . from the daily burden of carrying water from a well to experiencing life in the Spirit.
When Jesus reveals to the woman His supernatural knowledge to her failed marriages and current immorality, she does what is so natural to many of us. She tries to turn the dialogue into a theological discussion. Where is the proper place of worship, Samaria or Jerusalem? Gently but firmly, Jesus directs the conversation upward: “Neither,” the Lord responds. Worship is not to be focused upon a place, for worship is a matter of Spirit and truth (v. 24).
This amazing conversation again reveals the vertical heart of Jesus. Rather than getting bogged down in theological controversy, He quickly pointed to the heart of the matter. Worshipping God in Spirit and truth was what really mattered. The Lord is still pointing His people in this vertical direction today. The Father is still seeking those who will worship in Spirit and truth.
Father, I come to You today, worshipping before Your throne. Help me to do it in Spirit and in truth. Thank You for revealing Yourself through Your Word that I might know You and bow before You. Thank You for walking with me through Jesus that I might see You and understand more of who You are. In the midst of the conversations of the day, would You help me not only to continue to worship You, but to point others upward to You as Jesus did with this Samaritan woman?
–Adapted from Vertical with Jesus: A 30-Day Journey to Impact Kingdom Living by David and Kim Butts. This book is available at prayershop.org. Use the code CONPSP3 at checkout to receive an additional 10% discount.
Praise God that he cares about this world. Thank Christ that he calls the church “his” and that he has promised to build it (Mt. 16:18). Confess your own failures in using your time, talents, and tithe as God desires. Commit yourself to being an energetic, ability-using, enthusiastic part of the body in which Christ has placed you. Ask that, as a part of the church, you will live the fact that you belong to all the others (Rom. 12:5).
Ask God that your congregation will tirelessly live out the love that it has been given in Jesus Christ. Pray that the character and depth of this love will cause non-Christians in your community to want it for themselves.
–Prayer Points taken from Patterns for Prayer by Alvin VanderGriend.