No Bucket

“The woman said to Jesus, ‘Sir, you have no bucket, and the well is deep.'” – John 4:11

The sign at the supermarket entrance was big, bright, and accusatory: “Did you remember your reusable grocery bags?” It was the last straw, and it broke her.

She had a lot on her plate at work. She wasn’t sleeping. The commute was killing her. She’d been stopping at MacDonald’s every night, shoving the wrappers under the driver’s seat so it could still seem true that she never ate junk food. Her exercise routine consisted of chewing Milky Ways at her desk. Double-booked appointments had her apologizing for her existence. Kind co-workers picked up her slack. It deepened her guilt. Every thank-you was a self-flagellation. And now this. No, dammit, she hadn’t remembered her reusable grocery bags. She could barely remember her name. And right there, where they stack the carts, she wept.

I have no bucket, and the well is deep.

Been there? There now? Out of energy, out of time, out of resources, out of motivation, out of sorts, out of everything, no breath, no bags, no bucket? Scripture says that one hot day in Samaria, Jesus was there too. Empty-handed, just like you.

Wouldn’t it be good if simply looking for a moment at him, depleted like that, would fix your calendar, your commute, your exhaustion, your guilt? It won’t. But it might stir some compassion. For him. For you.

Seeing Jesus without a bucket might make you feel not so alone, not so stupid, not so much like a failure, not so empty after all. And that would be good too.

Let me comfort you, Jesus. Rest in me.
Comfort me, Jesus. Let me rest in you.

About the Author
Mary Luti is Interim Senior Pastor, Wellesley Village Church, Wellesley, Massachusetts.