The Lesser Thing

As a professor, I’m often amazed at the number of things my students don’t hear.

– Instructions for their homework

– A reminder about a project

– An announcement about a special event.

I know that the reason they don’t hear these things isn’t because I don’t say them clearly  – after all when we are talking about movies or job opportunities they understand me very well – but they don’t hear me because what I’m talking about isn’t what they are listening for. In other words, they don’t hear me because they’re wanting to hear something different.

And I find that sometimes I do the same with God.

And I’m not the only one.

In John 4, when we read about the woman at the well, we find that she did the same thing.

She was listening for a way to satisfy her thirst.

She missed the offer for eternal life.

She was listening for a way to be popular in her community.

She missed the message of restoration & salvation.

She was listening for someone to say they loved her.

She missed that she was talking to Love.

She missed the greater thing, because she was busy seeking something lesser.

And we do the same.

But thankfully, eventually, the woman heard the message she wasn’t even looking for.

And hopefully so do we.

What do you think?