Image by Rebecca K Photography
By Melissa Kramer, Trinity United Methodist Church
A few weeks ago, I was re-watching the 2012 movie, Les Misérables (yes, the one with Hugh Jackman). There is one line from the musical that always stays in my mind for days after hearing it, “to love another person is to see the face of God.” Thank you, Victor Hugo, for that beautiful line!
It is true, isn’t it? When we show love to others, we are sharing God’s love with them. But, is that really enough? Is that all that needs to be done? If we love someone, will they see God as a result? Well, yes and no. By loving others through acts of service and showing them kindness, compassion, and mercy, they may see God in us and through us. We talk about this all of the time! The Gospel is full of stories of Jesus showing love and compassion to others.
The focus of John chapter 4, while it is a lesson about loving others, especially the marginalized and outcast, it is also an invitation. Jesus offers the Samaritan woman something greater than kindness. He offers her truth. And even greater than that, he reveals to her that he is the Messiah. Jesus invites her and the entire rest of the town to believe in him!
We should desire to do more. Loving others must include inviting them to experience Jesus for themselves. It requires us to share the Gospel and invite others to know God personally. Sharing the Gospel seems like a daunting task. I would much rather write a sermon or lesson inviting people to know Jesus than have a conversation with someone! But, just like every other aspect of faith, we are never alone. The same God who journeys with us in the wilderness will give us strength as we proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ.