It is one of the most heart-rending of occurrences… Love found, love experienced, (but in the course of time)… love lost. Broken love relationships are one of the most commonly-shared human experiences. Nearly all of us have been touched by the devastation of the promise of love… broken. It can be the most painful of wounds.
Statistics say that one out of every two marriages ends in divorce. That’s 50%! That seems almost inconceivable – especially since love is supposed to be the most powerful force in the universe… the thing that conquers all. But so often what starts out as “’til death do us part” becomes short-lived – leaving broken, bitter hearts in its devastating wake.
That’s the hardest thing of all. The very thing that we so passionately seek (love!) to lift us up, to cause us to soar, to bring us happiness and joy – becomes the thing that sends us crashing to the ground, beaten, battered and bruised. Truly, love lost is one of the greatest losses of all.
Jesus encountered someone who was more beaten and battered than most.
One day, as He was sitting by a well, a woman came to draw water. Through the course of their conversation, Jesus rocks her world by revealing a fact He could not have known. She was the wife of five husbands and was now living with a man. She immediately recognizes that she was in the presence of a prophet – “who told me all I ever did.”
We do not know the facts surrounding this woman’s history. Was she widowed five times? Was she divorced five times? Was it a combination of both? However you look at it, she was well-acquainted with the grief and sorrow of love found… love lost. Can you imagine her brokenness? Her heart was a shambles (probably why she chose just to live with a man – rather than commit her heart to love again).
This is where we truly see the heart of Jesus for the heartbroken. He doesn’t condemn her – He reaches out to her… speaks tenderly of offering her living water – that will truly satisfy what she has always longed to know.
Her problem is such a common problem. So many people are looking to love relationships to bring satisfaction to their souls. To get what they so desperately need from another human being. This is a problem because human love cannot quench our spirits… it cannot bring us a lasting satisfaction in our hearts. It will always leave us thirsty for more.
That’s why Jesus said: “Those who drink the water I give will never be thirsty again. It becomes a fresh, bubbling spring within them, giving them eternal life.” (John 4:14)
Jesus words are not really about water… they are about the love of God, offered freely to those who long for the deeper experience of the kind of love we were all meant to receive… and thrive on! Jesus was speaking of the love of God – received only by receiving Him.
The best news of all is that the love of God always takes what is broken within us… and repurposes it. His love, within us, allows us to forgive those who have hurt us… it allows us to be free of all our chains of fear… it affords us the ability to truly connect (and help) those who are broken as well… and it enables our hearts to truly love again.
For those who may be broken and bitter with so much hurt in your heart, I give you the love of Jesus. As the woman at the well discovered… His love is healing. His love is unconditional. His love is permanent. His love restores. And His love will never leave your heart broken…