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The Lost Cause

by Bob Peterson

She brushed back her hair with a swipe of a hand,
While still holding tight to her pot.
She wearily marched over scrub grass and sand,
On a day that was brutally hot.

Day after day she had walked this same way,
Fetching water from the well Jacob made.
The others all went in the cool of the day,
But those others she wished to evade.

Her choices in life had not always been wise,
Giving her a bad name on the street.
She hated the scorn she could read in their eyes,
So, she came now alone in the heat.

As she neared the well, she muttered a curse,
For she couldn't believe it was true.
A man was there and what made matters worse,
The guy sitting there was a Jew.

She said to herself, "I'll pretend he's not there.
Just ignore the rotten fink."
But she stopped in surprise, turning to stare,
When he politely asked for a drink.

She looked all about as if asking "Who me?"
Then said, "Tell me, why would you as a Jew,
Be speaking to me, a woman you see,
Is a Samaritan, and hateful to you?"

The man merely smiled saying, "If you really knew
To just who it is that you speak.
Then rather than ask why I speak to you,
Some water from me you would seek."

"You give me water." she said in clear doubt,
Wondering what he was trying to sell.
You've nothing to use to draw water out,
And this is a very deep well."

"If you drink from this well", the man then replied,
"Soon you will be thirsty again.
But if you drink of the water that I can provide,
A living well will spring up within.

From my water your thirst will be satisfied,
As no other drink can do.
All that you need, it will provide.
Eternal life will be given to you."

She said with a smirk, "That sounds pretty good.
Sure, some of that water I'd like.
For if I had that water, then maybe I could
Stop making this long stinking hike."

But her smile disappeared when the man, then said,
"Go bring your husband here to this spot."
She quickly replied, her face going red,
"A husband's not something I've got."

The man smiled saying, "What you've said is quite true,
There's no husband that lives in your house.
You've actually had five, who were married to you,
And now a sixth that isn't your spouse."

Her face went white, and she stumbled a mite,
Thinking, "How in the world could he know?
He must be some prophet to get it all right."
Her panic she tried not to show.

She sought for a way to distract this guy
Away from her marital woes,
She thought she might give worship a try,
As a change of topic to propose.

She said, "Jews say your temple's the only right place,
Where worship can truly be done.
But we think if the place for the best worship space,
Is our mountain's right here, bar none."

But the man wasn't fooled by her attempt to distract,
His thoughts she failed to disjoint.
He just smiled saying, "Let me share a little fact,
With worship, the place isn't the point.

Our God is a god of truth and spirit,
And that's what real worship requires.
The message I bring for all who will hear it,
Is, a new kind of worship God desires.

Worship that flows from the depths of our heart,
And not just in word or show.
That kind of worship can bring a new start,
And a hope that continues to grow."

As he spoke these words, she let out a sigh,
Wishing that it could be true.
But how could she trust in the words of some guy,
Who was somebody nobody knew?

"The Messiah will come someday we're told,"
She said as she picked up her pot.
"Then He will explain how it all will unfold,"
"Just not to someone like me", she thought.

The man looked at her, then said very clear,
"What you say of the Messiah is true.
And the one that you seek is sitting right here.
I came that I might speak to you."

As his words sank in, she started to shake.
Her feet were pleading to dance.
She felt the chains around her heart break,
And knew this was her second chance.

"Yes, oh yes", she gave out a yell,
And jumped nearly out of her shoes.
Leaving water and pot there by the well,
She ran home to tell all the news.

Jesus her as she flew down the path,
Thinking, "My but that woman can run".
Then smiling to heaven, He said with a laugh,
"Sometimes this job is just fun."

A Samaritan woman scorned by her own kind,
So very lost in the fall.
A walking lost cause, even in her own mind,
But not to the Lord God of all.

Jesus came all that way on that hot sultry day,
Just to save one unworthy lost cause.
When lost causes today, makes the choice to obey,
He still leads in heaven's applause.

This poem won second place for the May 2022 poetry contest

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Books by Bob Peterson

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