‘Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I’ve ever done.”’ (v39) John 4:1–42

D. M. Panton describes revival as ‘the inrush of divine life into a body threatening to become a corpse’ (Revival by D. M. Panton). Revival is a wake-up call to the promised purpose and presence of God on earth. It is the Church returning to Pentecost. Certainly, the Samaritan woman woke up to the person and life of Jesus. Such was her testimony that her disapproving neighbours wanted what she’d discovered.

I’m personally tired of apologising for Christ and our Christian faith. A secular media, together with a social environment that consistently undermines authority, devalues committed relationships and worships the pursuit of self-interest, has rejected God’s order and seeks to undermine God’s Word.

Yet, this story demonstrates how God’s truth breaks into broken circumstances to bring hope, joy and healing. Only with God can hope be both realised and sustained. It’s not our context that shapes us, but who shares that context with us.

Revival consists of a deep awareness of our need for God, together with a sense of our shortcomings. This is accompanied by a deep desire for a fresh start, no matter who we are or what we’ve done. God is no respecter of social convention or status. He invites us, like Jesus, to draw alongside our community and introduce its members to the living water that quenches our persistent thirst for Truth.

Related Scripture to Consider: Psalm 85; Isa. 57:11–21; Acts 2:36–41; 1 John 1:5–10.

An Action to Take: Consider this: does our faith stand in need of a spring clean? If we cannot perceive the outpouring of God’s love throughout society, maybe our spiritual lens needs a Holy Spirit polish!

A Prayer to Make: ‘Lord, I pray for Holy Spirit power, that I may live as your witness wherever life carries me. Amen.

Photo by Naassom Azevedo on Unsplash

Micha Jazz is Director of Resources at Waverley Abbey, UK.