The Drink Of A Lifetime!


This is a true, inspiring story, found in the Bible, which beautifully shows what Jesus is like. We know from other parts of the Bible; Jesus is Jewish, a carpenter turned Rabbi, and truly, the Son of God. In this story, we find Jesus knows every woman’s life story and, in spite of how hard or easy life has been, Jesus loves women to their core, and He wants to give them eternal life. Here, we see Jesus meet with a Samaritan woman, known as “The Woman At The Well.” She is having a hard life.

Look at the Samaritan woman’s dress. It is filled with holes. These holes represent parts of her broken, empty heart. Because she has tried to find love and acceptance in many difficult relationships, without success, her heart has brokenness or emotional holes. Will Jesus be able to help her with these holes?


Jesus is hot, tired, thirsty and hungry. He is in a place of need. It is noon; the heat of the sun is directly over his head. He is seated at a famous place, Jacob’s well, in Samaria. This well is 100 feet deep and fed by a flowing spring. His disciples have gone into town to find some lunch. As Jesus humbly sits at the well, the Samaritan woman approaches alone with her water jar. It’s odd she is alone and coming at noon.

Women usually walked together to gather water. They come to the well early in the day, so they have plenty of water for their meals, their animals and their cleaning. It is likely this woman is alone because she is a social outcast; her community of women have judged her poor moral life and decided she should be left out – marginalized from their daily lives. It is a daily shame for her to walk to this well alone.

The Bible says Jesus “had to go through Samaria” on His was to Galilee. There were other ways to Galilee, so it seems likely His urgency to go through Samaria is because He planned to meet with the woman at the well and her community. Everywhere He went, Jesus had encounters with people that changed their lives forever. Let’s see what happens at Jacob’s well in Samaria.


Samaritans have their own distinct religion, a mixture of Jewish faith and other faiths, without many Jewish distinctive. Jews and Samaritans hated each other because of this mixture and tried to have nothing to do with each other. As the woman arrives at Jacob’s well, Jesus says to her, “Will you give me a drink?” Surprised He would even talk with her, the woman replies, “You are a Jew, and I am a Samaritan woman.” She is reminding Jesus; Jews and Samaritans hate each other.

The fact that Jesus is Jewish, a man, a rabbi, and the Son of God, but He wants to have a drink and a conversation with this woman, shows He is eager to cross the gender boundary, the religious/racial boundary, and the moral/social boundary. These were normal boundaries for that time. Jesus was revolutionary in crossing all these boundaries.


Responding to the woman, Jesus says, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would ask me for a drink, and I would give you Living Water.” The woman replies, “You don’t even have a cup, this well is really deep. How are you going to get this “Living Water?” Are you a better man than our ancestor Jacob, who dug this well, drank from it, along with his sons and livestock, and passed it down to us?” She’s thinking fast on her feet! This well has the best water around, so how will Jesus be able to produce even better water? How will He get it?


Jesus embraces the woman’s questions. He thoughtfully and kindly responds to her, “When you drink from this well, you will get thirsty again. Anyone who drinks the water I give will never thirst again. The water I give will be a spring just like a fountain of endless water lasting into eternity.” The woman excitedly replies, “Sir, give me this water so I am never thirsty again, and I will never have to come back to this well again.” She has forgotten quickly how special the well is! She is hoping to satisfy her physical need for water, and her emotional need to avoid the daily shame of coming to the well alone.


Then, Jesus asks her to go get her husband. That command will touch at the heart of her story and her holes. “I have no husband,” the woman asserts. Jesus responds, “You have sure answered correctly. You have had five husbands, and the man you are living with is not your husband.” Wow! He knows her story, in deep ways, that he hints at with the facts in His response. He’s also catching her in a half-truth, because actually she’s had many husbands and is currently living with a man. Yet, He remains kindly engaged with this woman. Do you think He wanted to heal her heart?

There may be a variety of reasons why this woman has been married five times. She may have been: unable to have children and her husband wanted children, or she may be widowed, or she may have been abused. She may have committed adultery. Whatever her reasons for five marriages and five divorces, she has endured much shame through either her actions, or the actions of her husbands. She is currently living in a shame-filled relationship; the man she is living with won’t marry her. She is really in a profoundly unsafe and impoverished situation.


She must have marveled at how Jesus knew her story. She concludes He is a prophet, a man who speaks for God. “I perceive you are a prophet,” she replies and adds, “We Samaritans worship on this mountain, but you Jews worship in Jerusalem. Where should we worship?” Jesus must have enjoyed having the conversation turn to her worship! Most likely, she has been worshiping men, and how they might satisfy her deepest needs. He takes the time to teach and to care for this woman’s heart-felt questions and miss-placed worship.

“The time is coming, and really, has come when you worship God neither on this mountain, nor in Jerusalem. Salvation does come from the Jews, however, true worshipers worship God in spirit and in truth in their hearts. That’s the worship God seeks. God is spirit and must be worshiped in spirit and in truth.” The woman at the well is listening intently. Perhaps, she feels her question hasn’t been fully explained, because she informs Jesus, “I know Messiah is coming. When He comes, He will explain everything to us.” She is counting on getting the whole story on worship from the Messiah. Jesus reveals Himself to her when He next says, “I, the one speaking to you, am Messiah.” What amazing grace for her to have such crucial news first-hand! Now all her questions can be answered.


Just then, the disciples return to the well with lunch. They are shocked to see Jesus talking with that kind of woman! They didn’t have the nerve to ask Him why He is talking to her, but you can imagine their surprised and maybe, mocking faces.


As they approach, the woman drops her water jar and runs back to her community. The woman has forgotten all about her need for drinking water! She is filled with joy as she shares with the townspeople, “Come meet a man who told me everything I ever did! He knows everything about me. Could He be the Messiah?” How many people do you know with whom you are happy they know your whole story? Her story is filled with shame, and yet, she grasps Jesus knows her shame-filled story and STILL wants a relationship with her. He wants to give her “Living Water” and says He is the Messiah.

The people make their way to the well to see the man who so captivated the Samaritan woman’s heart. At the urging of the townspeople, Jesus and His disciples stay two more days in Samaria. Many believed Jesus is the Messiah based on the woman’s testimony, and, also, in seeing Jesus for themselves. As Jesus left town, the townspeople said, “We know this man is really the Savior of the world.” Jesus graciously allowed the woman at the well to be a part of bringing many to this knowledge, and He left her with a community of people who would appreciate and love her. She is no longer left out or alone in her shame. Her holes are being filled with Jesus and His love. Her brokenness is being healed as she worships God in spirit and in truth, in her heart. She is safe and spiritually wealthy. Now, she drinks from the fountain of Living Water!

Please see John, chapter four to read the whole story in the Bible.




Storyropes™ and Story Squares in Peru 2015

A wall of storyropes™ with the Peruvian leader, Eisleen.

I have just returned from a three week trip to Trujillo, Peru. What an amazing adventure! A team of 16 women served in seven women’s oasis centers using storyropes™ and story squares to help share personal stories. I always began our time together with a Bible teaching that emphasized Jesus’ love for women. I used my collaged art books to teach the Bible stories. Along with my American team, I was hoping to give each woman emotional courage through the Bible stories, so they could share their hearts, their stories, and release deep trauma.

Marcia Carole teaching the “Woman At The Well” story.

We prayed for each woman. The American and Peruvian leaders divided up into small groups in order to hear everyone’s story; those who felt comfortable sharing what they could, expressed relief and healing. It was especially meaningful when the Peruvian women prayed for the American women.

Praying through each story.
After praying, Each woman was given a crown to remind them they are daughters of the King of Kings! We then shared a simple meal together.
After many workshops, I felt so blessed and honored to know this dear new friend in Peru.

I’ll be sharing more detailed stories soon, but I wanted to share a first look at my time in Peru. Stay tuned for more!

Hope Beyond My Tears

Here is my latest, hand-made, collaged book. It is the story of two daughters: the woman with a 12 year bleeding problem and the raising from the dead of a 12 year old daughter.
Jairus comes to Jesus begging Him to come and heal his dying daughter.
Meanwhile, in another part of town, a woman with an issue of blood hears Jesus could heal her. She is beyond hoping for healing. She is poverty-stricken; doctors have taken her money and left her worse off physically. However, someone breaks into her dark space with Good News! Someone takes a risk, and reaches out to her. She moves out in hope beyond her tears, darkness, poverty and identity as an unclean woman.
The woman breaks through several societal and religious boundaries in order to touch the hem of Jesus’ prayer shawl. She goes secretly to touch Jesus, who is walking in a crowd. Maybe she will be unnoticed, and slip away quietly. She reaches out, in faith, and touches Him.
Power goes out of Jesus; the woman’s faith in Jesus brings about her healing. Her bleeding is drying up. Oh, no! Fear. Panic. The woman is discovered; however, the first word Jesus generously gives her is, “daughter.” He embraces her verbally by describing her as family. (This is the King of the Universe’s daughter.) Because she is a daughter to Him, she is just as valuable a daughter as Jairus’ daughter. Meanwhile, a messenger comes and tells Jairus that his daughter has died. Jesus asks Jairus to “believe” or have faith in Him. Jairus has to hope beyond his tears. When they arrive at Jairus’ house, Jesus says the girl is sleeping. He is mocked by the mourners, and Jesus excuses them. Jesus raises the daughter from death in the company of her parents and Peter, James and John, the mourners are invited back – to a celebration, and Jesus continues onto the cross. He will ultimately rise from the dead, thus he conquers death for all who believe.
One woman had been dying for 12 years, one girl had been living for 12 years. Both needed healing and hope beyond their tears. I hope to use this book in Nicaragua and Peru, as well as other countries, therefore, the Spanish title.

This story can be found in Mark 5:21-43 found here.

“When Jesus looks at Jairus and says “Trust me, be patient,” in effect he is looking over Jairus’s head at all of us and saying, “Remember when I calmed the storm, I showed you that my grace and love are compatible with what seems to you to be unconscionable delays.” It’s not ”I will not be hurried even though I love you”; it’s “I will not be hurried because I love you. I know what I am doing. And if you impose your understanding of schedule and timing on me, you will struggle to feel loved by me.”

Jesus will not be hurried, and as a result, we often feel exactly like Jairus, impatient because he’s delaying irrationally, unconscionably, inordinately. “(Kings Cross, p. 63-64)
“Right now is God delaying something in your life? Are you ready to give up? Are you impatient with him? There may be a crucial factor that you just don’t have access to. The answer, as with Jairus, is to trust Jesus.” (p. 67)

As I wait for places to serve using art engaging story, I must learn patience and trust, just like Jairus. Jesus knows best.

Being Brave, Part 2


I am beginning the collage process for the story of Jairus’ twelve year old daughter and the woman with the hemorrhage of blood for twelve years. First, I draw out a sketch, in my head or on paper, to get started. It never quite ends up the way I draw it.


Next, I lay down the background for the main characters. I’ve got some marble paper from Italy for the water. I’ve got my newly painted papers for mountainous textures, sky and land. In the story, Jesus has just crossed the sea having just spent time removing a legion of demons from a man in the country of the Gerasenes.


I decide to make Jairus and Jesus bigger than I originally thought I would, so I switched their positions from the way I had my original drawing. Jesus is heading on His way, but He stops for Jairus. I want Jairus in a humble position, bravely asking, begging Jesus to heal his daughter, just as in the original account from the Bible.


“And when Jesus had crossed again in the boat to the other side, a great crowd gathered about him, and he was beside the sea. Then came one of the rulers of the synagogue, Jairus by name, and seeing him, he fell at his feet and implored him earnestly, saying, “My little daughter is at the point of death. Come and lay your hands on her, so that she may be made well and live.”  And he went with him.” – Mark 5:21-24

Teaching Bible With Collaged Art Books

marcia and kids
Marcia Carole Teaching The Story Of The Prodigal Son Story In Cambodia

One of the “tools” in my art suitcase is usually an art book or two, that I have made, to use to tell children, in oral learning cultures, different Bible stories. After sharing God’s heart, His character or one of His amazing attributes, my team and I ask the children to make art in response to the Bible story.

A child in India responds to the story of Abraham, Hagar and Sarah.


Joyous children from a slum in India after hearing the Bible story and making the art.

Making the art helps the children to internalize the story, and it may be the only art they will have in their home. I often also give the children a copy of one page from my collaged art book because when I was serving in Ethiopia and teaching Bible stories, one child shared with me, “I will never forget this story because you shared this card with me.”

Art card given to each child who heard the story of Noah when I was serving in Haiti.

It is always a joy to spend time with children all over the world, and to teach them the Bible truths using art!

The children from Cité Soleil after making the art about Noah’s Story.