For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength. [Philippians 4:13 (NLT)]
Although it was noon during the heat of the day when most people would be resting, the woman came to the well for water. Perhaps, because she’d been married five times and was living with a man not her husband, the other women in the village made it clear that she wasn’t welcome in the early morning or late evening when they gathered there. Nevertheless, it was with this woman that Jesus had the longest one-on-one conversation recorded in Scripture. It was to this Samaritan woman that Jesus revealed He was the Living Water she so desperately needed.
Throughout Scripture, we find God using those who seem least qualified to do His work. An unnamed woman of questionable character became His first evangelist in Samaria and a Gentile man so possessed by demons that he’d been chained and shackled in a cave was chosen to evangelize in the Decapolis. Abraham, a coward who twice gave his wife to other men to save himself, was God’s unlikely choice to be the father of all nations and his wife Sarah, an infertile old woman, was chosen to be the mother of those nations. God chose an old man with a speech impediment to demand that Pharaoh let His people go and a shepherd boy with a slingshot to fell a giant and lead a nation. A man so afraid of the Midianites that he hid in his winepress while threshing wheat and called his clan the weakest and himself the least of them, was chosen by God to defeat Israel’s oppressors. Chosen to spread the gospel to all nations was a Pharisee who hated Christ’s followers and silently watched while Stephen was stoned by an angry mob. A prostitute, a widow who masqueraded as a prostitute, a hated Moabite, an adulteress, and an unwed teen from an insignificant village were chosen as part of His Son’s family tree. To bear witness to the empty tomb, God chose women: people who couldn’t even testify in court!
Were any of these people qualified for the role they were called to play? Probably not, but that didn’t matter because God will qualify the ones he calls. Can we fell giants with a slingshot or lead an outnumbered army to victory? Probably not…unless God calls us to do that very thing! When we answer His call, He will equip the unequipped, enable the unable, strengthen the weak, embolden the meek, empower the powerless, encourage the discouraged, and do the extraordinary with the ordinary.