In the Daily Lectionary that is found in the ELW there are daily readings appointed. We are in Year A (first of a 3 year cycle) and one of the appointed readings for the Thursday before Easter 4 is Exodus 2:15b-25. It is a story of Moses.
Exodus 2:15b-25, NRSV
This is a story that can easily be lost. It comes after Moses is born, cast into the river and rescued by Pharoah's daughter (hence the name Moses which means "drawn out of the water"--see Exodus 2:10). It also comes after the account of Moses coming to the defense of a Hebrew slave by killing an Egyptian slavemaster and burying him in the sand. Pharoah had heard about this transgression and was looking to kill Moses and so Moses was on the lam.
It comes just before the account of the burning bush. Where God declares "I am that I am" or "I will be what I will be" and sets Moses apart to be the agent of deliverance for the Hebrew people through the plagues and the Passover. Moses is given his calling to ministry on behalf of God.
This account of Moses at the well is in some ways just an ordinary tale of a man sitting at a well during the day. He is resting and watching and here comes seven women, including Zipporah Moses' future wife, who are daughters of the priest Reuel (aka Jethro--see:
These women come under attack from local shepherds. Moses comes to their defense and offers their flock life-giving water. He breaks bread with the women and their family and he meets his wife. Life and relationship come about through the deliverance at the well.
I can't help but connect this account to Jesus taking a rest at a well in John 4. He is sitting at a well that was attributed to Jacob (another shepherd of the Old Testament). The woman comes to the well during the heat of the day (presumably to avoid coming under attack from others due to her circumstance) Jesus brings a word of deliverance and promises life-giving water. Life and relationship come about through deliverance at the well.
Most of us won't be miraculously plucked from the waters and enter into the household of the seat of power to begin fulfilling a divine, history-altering calling this day. Most of us won't strike up a consequential conversation with burning foliage today. We will be about more ordinary things. We will tend chores and relationships. We will whittle away at to-do lists and perhaps long for things to be different than they are.
The disciples were out shopping (whittling away their to-do list) and Jesus was tending relationships at the well. Through those seemingly simple and rather run-of-the-mill actions life and relationship were sustained.
May we all be blessed this day as we sit by the well, strike up conversations and come to the defense of those under all manner of siege.
Jesus, meet us at the well. Let your life-giving waters flow into, through and out of us. Bring life and relationship, healing and deliverance. Amen.