Vineyard Worship

The Heart Comes Home – To Peace (Second Sunday Of Advent)

Featuring Vineyard Worship Posted on November 9, 2016

The Heart Has A Home CD 226

Your Advent Promise

Peace within comes from being known for who we are, and being accepted without judgment or a need to perform.

Scripture

“Now he had to go through Samaria. So he came to a town in Samaria called Sychar, near the plot of ground Jacob had given to his son Joseph. Jacob’s well was there, and Jesus, tired as he was from the journey, sat down by the well. It was about noon. When a Samaritan woman came to draw water, Jesus said to her, ‘Will you give me a drink?’ (His disciples had gone into the town to buy food.) The Samaritan woman said to him, ‘You are a Jew and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink?’ (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans.) Jesus answered her, ‘If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water’” (John 4:4-10).

Devotional

In the Christmas story so familiar to us all, there is one woman who gets most of the attention – Mary. As the mother of Jesus, this young girl courageously resists all ridicule to be found faithful to what she has seen and heard. Mary is iconic, a feminine vision of faith and trust in God for all the ages. In John’s Gospel, however, Mary is only mentioned twice – once when she asks Jesus for some practical help with a little wedding-wine- wonder-working (John 2:1-11), and the second time, at the foot of the cross, where Jesus asks John to care for her as he would his own mother (John 19:26-27). A different woman takes center stage in John’s Gospel, with almost an entire chapter devoted to her encounter with the “Word-made-flesh.”

The Woman At The Well

From Genesis to Revelation, God makes it clear that when He is looking at a person, He is looking at their heart. The heart is where peace begins and ends. Those who claim that peace can fully come outside the changing of human hearts are severely mistaken.

In this familiar story, Jesus is by Jacob’s well at noon time. As John recounts, Jesus is alone. Alone, that is, until a Samaritan woman comes out to draw water from the well to take back into town. The context should not be lost on us. In the Bible, wells are often places where interpersonal discoveries happen (betrothals and revelations), where peace enters dire situations in the form of love discovered and love requited, and where water is used as much as a metaphor as it is for drinking.

The Heart Searches For Peace

Jesus suggests He is the bearer of living water, even as the woman draws from the natural well. After Jesus prophetically tells her unseemly facts about her life that He could not have known except by revelation, the woman declares Him to be a prophet. Then something happens that reveals her heart, and why the Word-made-flesh has chosen to step into her story. In her fascination – and without skipping a beat – she asks Him the most important question she can think to ask. “‘Sir,’ the woman said, ‘I can see that you are a prophet. Our ancestors worshipped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.’” She is asking which place is correct.

Upon encountering the Word-made- flesh, we all might ask a selfish question, realizing we may not get this opportunity again! But this woman? She asks a question about worship. She wants to know what location for worship brings God pleasure.

Jesus does not regard her question as silly or ignorant. It is clear she has a soft heart that is ripe for return and redemption – and, with a few words, Jesus opens for her the door of her Father’s house. She is coming home. In her excitement, she runs toward her Father’s house after a long exile in her heart. Running to tell others, many come to believe in the Incarnate Word that day.

Ask God For A Gift This Christmas

The innocence in this seemingly “worldly” woman is striking. She is hungry for God’s peace, and is looking for it in (unstable)
relationships. She, like so many of us, is longing for acceptance, searching for it in a hundred different places.

Act On This Devotional

Reorient to your Father again. Just as He had a ‘room of peace’ in His house for this woman, so too He has a room for you. If your heart is restless, come to the well – and renew your rest in your Father’s acceptance.

Songs of Peace for the Second Sunday of Advent

VUSA74.190

About This Devotional

This devotional is offered in cooperation with Vineyard Resources as a six-part advent series called The Heart Has A Home. The series includes readings for the four Sundays of Advent, plus Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

Uniquely designed as a Christmas gift booklet for congregations and as an outreach tool for neighbors and co-workers, "The Heart Has A Home"  will take every reader on a powerful devotional experience from Advent through Christmas.

Each devotional has been featured in the PraiseCharts blog, along with suggested songs for worship. Vineyard Resources is offering a beautifully designed PDF version for free. If your church would like to purchase physical copies to hand out, they are available for just $1.25/ea. (for packages of 100+). You can download the eBook here, and order the physical booklets and download the additional resources here.

More From “ Heart Has A Home”

  1. Introduction
  2. Week 1: The Heart Comes Home – To Hope
  3. Week 2: The Heart Comes Home – To Peace
  4. Week 3: The Heart Comes Home – To Joy
  5. Week 4: The Heart Comes Home – To Love
  6. Christmas Eve: A Long Wandering To The Place We Call Home
  7. Christmas Day: Home For Christmas
  8. Why Should We Celebrate Advent and Christmas?

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