John 4 Jesus and the Samaritans
After the Samaritans saw with their own eyes this man claiming to be the Messiah, something incredible happened:
"They begged him to stay in their village."
A wonder among wonders!!! Samaritans inviting a Jew to live with them. For this is the implication of the word, "stay" - not just visit, but live with them! Did they fight over who got the honor of having him as a guest?
When I was a child our church families took turns hosting the current preacher and his family for Sunday dinner. I don't recall anyone ever fighting over who would get to entertain them most often. Rather, it seemed more a duty, and everyone breathed a sigh of relief when the deed was accomplished. The woman of the house felt pressured to spread an extra fine meal on the table, so she fried, baked and stewed right up until church time on Sunday morning. That didn't include the furious cleaning she and the children did for days.
The poor preachers were good fellows. They, their wives and kids were well-liked for the most part. They were perceived, however, to be larger than life. Men of the cloth appeared to be pretty much perfect, and blessed with a calling we could not aspire to. We viewed no minister as a "regular guy." I mean, they wore suits with white shirts and ties!! So, we weren't comfortable rubbing elbows with them. I suspect, unlike the Samaritans, we wouldn't have anticipated hosting the Lord any more than feeding the preacher, because our perception of him was likely skewed too.
I'm glad I don't view preachers now like I did as a child. I know they're regular guys. I know their calling from God doesn't make them out of touch with the rest of us - I realize they don't even have to wear suits and ties! I know they like to eat great food just as the rest of us do, but they'll also settle for a baloney sandwich. And they're just as pleasant to visit with as any ordinary person!
What I'm most glad about is my different view of the Savior. I can see myself chatting with him in my home. I can almost see his kind eyes, the love reaching out to me from his countenance. His easy, relaxed manner, his openness and honesty invite me to know him better. And above all, his offering me the bubbling spring of eternal life, just because he loves me, makes me bow in adoration. Praise his name! i>