June 6

2 Samuel 15:19-21 (NIV) 19The king said to Ittai the Gittite, "Why should you come along with us? Go back and stay with King Absalom. You are a foreigner, an exile from your homeland. 20You came only yesterday. And today shall I make you wander about with us, when I do not know where I am going? Go back, and take your countrymen. May kindness and faithfulness be with you." 21But Ittai replied to the king, "As surely as the LORD lives, and as my lord the king lives, wherever my lord the king may be, whether it means life or death, there will your servant be."

Absalom returned his father David's mercy with a coup. David got wind of the revolt and fled with those who were loyal to him. David knew it would be tough, so in the generosity of his spirit, he told the foreigner, Ittai, to stay. Ittai had only recently come to Jerusalem as an exile from his own land.

Instead of taking the easy way out, Ittai chose the tough road with David. Ittai's response shows that David's good spirit must have won his heart. Ittai was probably exiled because of his political savy and not going along with those who led his own country. He could see David was an honest and sincere king. He chose to stay by David's side regardless of the cost.

It doesn't take long to develop strong friendships if you are a genuinely loving person. The world is looking for sincere people who will be honest, people that will risk their position to be kind. This is how we influence people with the Gospel. They see our sincerity, align themselves with us, and we get to tell them why we live like we do. In time, our God becomes their choice.

Consider: Our life must flow from a sincere heart before people will respond to us like Ittai did to David.

June 6

John 4:13-15 (NIV) 13Jesus answered, "Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, 14but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life." 15The woman said to him, "Sir, give me this water so that I won't get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water."

John said Jesus had to go through Samaria. There was another route, but He had to go that way. The Holy Spirit had a most unlikely appointment for Him. The Samaritans were descended from Jews that had intermarried with other nations. They had their own version of the books of Moses. The Jews looked down on them as an inferior and polluted people.

At noon, Jesus stopped at a well. He was physically tired from the journey. The disciples went on to a place where they could buy some food. While Jesus was resting, a woman came to the well. This was not the normal hour to come for water, for it was the heat of the day. She was avoiding running into other women. Jesus asked for a drink of water. She was shocked. Jews never use the same jars that Samaritans use for fear of defilement. "You are a Jew, and you want to drink from my pot?" He told her she should be asking Him for living water. She asked Him how He was going to get the water without a pot. Jesus answered with the verses above. Read them again.

Israel is a dry and mostly barren land. Water means life to it. Jesus had turned the physical into an analogy for the spiritual. He has life giving water for the spirit of mankind. We are dry and barren without the water of life, but if we will receive it from Him, it will become a spring that wells up to eternal life.

As through most of the Book of John, we see the person misunderstanding the spiritual reality. She wanted the gift so she didn't have to come and face the embarrassment of seeing other women at the well. She had a bad reputation. Jesus told her He knew her sin. She then tried to turn the subject into a religious debate, but Jesus went right to her heart with truth. Her testimony led many in her town to Jesus. He refused to buy into the prejudice of His culture Samaritans, women, and even about her moral condition. She was a soul that was in a drought and thirsting for a different life.

Consider: How do you see the people around you?