What would it be like to talk with Jesus?
Looking at the story of his encounter with a lone Samaritan woman beside her village well (John 4), we get an insight into what a conversation with Jesus might be like.
The first point to note is how free from prejudice he was. Asking this lone Samaritan woman to give him a drink crossed a number of established social, racial, moral and religious boundaries. Jesus appears unconcerned about such things.
Next, it is well worth noting the gentle way he engaged in the conversation. To begin with, Jesus worked with the subject immediately to hand - drinking water. He was neither dogmatic nor doctrinal, but subtly shifted the conversation from the physical to the spiritual, contrasting well-water with ‘living water’. It sparked a lively conversation. Then, when the woman changed the subject onto places of worship, Jesus went with her and took a similar approach. He engaged her with an intriguing and unexpected perspective on her chosen subject. He did something very similar with his disciples when they arrived and started talking about food.
Jesus did not attempt to control or dominate these conversations. He went with the flow and used the matters in hand as metaphors for spiritual realities. He didn’t change the subject; he raised the subject onto a different level.
Perhaps we should expect God to speak to us in a similar way, reflecting on the mundane things around us, and challenging us to see them as metaphors for more important matters.