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The Woman At The Well:  The ex-wife of Parry, Barry, Gary, Harry and Larry
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The Woman At The Well: The ex-wife of Parry, Barry, Gary, Harry and Larry 

Anna laughed hard. This man won’t kill me with laughter, she thought. These Jews are just impossible! Is this the style their men use to woo their women? She wondered if Jews would have made better husbands…

She looked at the man. There was nothing attractive about him. He wasn’t a handsome man. (Isaiah 53:2) He wasn’t that educated. But he had an aura about him she could not understand. He reminded her of Barry, her ex-husband. He also had that aura of importance about him. An aura that disappeared no sooner she married him…

Why does he ask me for water to drink, knowing it is unethical to do so? He may not be educated, but he sure doesn’t look too unintelligent not to know the boundaries he should not cross: the Jews and the Samaritans do not mix…

“If you know who I am, you would ask me for Living Water”

Ok. This is a new one. Living Water indeed. Maybe I should just play along. “Sir, how do you plan to get this water, seeing you have nothing to fetch with? I’m curious!”

“You don’t understand, Anna. You see, when you drink this water, you will get thirsty again sooner or later. The Living Water I give is one that you drink only once and you never would be thirsty again”

Anna laughed again. This man is sure cracking me up! Is he aware he sounds crazy? Does he know it’s those wizards who understand the dark arts, the necromancers and those with familiar spirits that speak like this? Does he know what they do to witches and wizards in these parts? He must have a familiar spirit to know my name. Maybe I should report him to the authorities and let them stone him to death.

“Sir, ok- you have another source of water somewhere? Give me this water, let’s test your product and see…”

The man suddenly changed the subject: “Go and call your husband” Aha! I knew it! He wants to know if I’m available, single and searching. Men are ALL the same. I should know with my experiences with them.

But He sure has a way with words. He reminds me of Parry, that good for nothing smooth talking first husband of mine.

“I don’t have a husband!”

“Yeah, you don’t, Anna. Actually, the man you live with now is not your husband. But you’ve had 5 husbands before you met and moved in with George. You were once married to Parry, Barry, Harry, Gary and Larry”

Anna was stunned.

This man is either a wizard or a prophet. At this point, she was more certain of the latter than the former.

Her mind wandered many years back to her failed marriages…

She was 16 when she first got married. Parry was a ruddy strong young man. She fell in love with him at first sight. He was 17. He had the gift of the garb. He used to sing songs for her, especially the one from the movie, The Sound of Music. “You are 16, going on 17, I will take care of you…”

Parry turned out to be a useless man. He never provided for her. She was the bread winner. The marriage collapsed after 2 years.

At 20, she met Barry. He was not the most handsome of men, but he was suave, he was polished and was from a wealthy home. “He must be able to take care of me,” she reasoned. They got married a few months after they met. Then she realized she married a man who had no mind of his own. He had no initiative; he was a mummy’s boy. His mother made decisions for him. Whenever she made any plan with him, he would go to his mother to run it by her.

Ana felt she was married to 2 people. She could not take it after a year. The marriage ended in a divorce.

Anna realized the reasons she married Parry was because he said sweet words to her, the stuff that would melt any lady’s heart. Barry was wealthy, but had no life. She had experienced 2 ways how not to choose a husband…

Then she met Gary.

He was brilliant, had a great job with a very attractive persona. He had a way of making her laugh. He was fun to be with- there was never a dull moment with him. She was sure she had found the real McCoy. They had a quiet wedding, away from the paparazzi and gossip magazines. Ana wanted a quiet life and she believed she had found it. Until she discovered she had married a chronic womanizer.

She filed for divorce.

She decided to take things easy. I must be careful not to make this mistake again, she reasoned. I will take my time. I don’t want a Mr. Right Now anymore. I want a Mr. Right and I will wait for him, no matter how long it takes…

Ana was single for 5 years. Then Harry came along.

He was a complete gentleman. He would take her on romantic dinners. He would open the car door for her; pull the chair for her to sit… Harry was The One.

They got married and not long after, the dragon was unleashed: Harry was a wife beater. He would beat her for the flimsiest reason. His food was not served on time, the salt was too much, he wanted orange juice not mango juice, he asked for Thisday newspaper not The Guardian… anything was enough reason to beat her up. She suffered several fractures and spent lots of time in the hospital.

She could not continue with the abuse after 6 years. Incidentally, this was her longest marriage because she really wanted it to work. She was tired of the ridicule, the gossips and snide remarks. She had friends who had married once and had stayed married. Why is my own different, she cried.

Anna wanted to be happy. She believed there is a man out there that would love her genuinely. She was a good woman, a hard worker who had paid her dues in her work and was fairly comfortable.

Anna decided to give it one more trial. She married Larry when she started feeling lonely and needed company. Larry was a widower, he just lost his wife of 20 years a few months earlier. Ana felt after being with a woman for 20 years, Larry must know how to treat a lady.

Larry was simply a gold digger. His late wife was the daughter of a wealthy man. He lived off her. He married Anna because he saw her as another meal ticket. When Anna realized this, she kicked him out.

“I AM DONE WITH MEN!” she concluded. There is no good man anywhere. They are ALL the same…

How many times do we hear that? How many women have come to that conclusion too?

Maybe the problem is with the marriage institution? The next man I meet and like, I won’t marry him. I’d rather we live together without any commitments so the issue of divorce will never come up.

She had been living with George for about 3 years now. And to her amazement, they get on well! They hardly quarrel or have any serious misunderstanding. When George asked they get married, she brought up the issue of Pre-nuptial agreement. She wasn’t ready to be hurt by another gold digger…

Anna is 40 years old now.

She was jolted back to reality when the man said, “God is a Spirit, and they who desire to worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth…”

Really! Well, I’ve heard something similar, but I was told there’s a Messiah coming who will teach us all things…

“I am THE Messiah you talk about.”

In that moment, Anna realized she had been seeking for love in the wrong places.

You don’t need a spouse to be whole. You don’t need a spouse to be happy. You don’t need a spouse to be complete. It takes a happy and fulfilled single woman to make a happy and fulfilled wife. Marriage never completes you. It can only complement you.

True wholeness, happiness and completeness can ONLY be found in Him.

Anna eventually found all she had been looking for when she met the Man by the well…


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