Was it by chance that they met?

(George Everard, "By the Well of Sychar" 1884)

"He had to go through Samaria. So He came to a town in Samaria called Sychar . . . Jacob's well was there, and Jesus, tired as He was from the journey, sat down by the well. When a Samaritan woman came to draw water, Jesus said to her: Will you give Me a drink?" John 4:4-7

How was it that Jesus was there at the moment when the woman came?

Was it by chance that they met? Was it simply an opportunity for doing good that the Master seized? I do not so read the story. The Good Shepherd was weary — for He had come many a mile to fetch home a lost and wandering one!

"There were ninety and nine that safely lay
 In the shelter of the fold;
 But one was out on the hills away,
 Far off from the gates of gold,
 Away on the mountains wild and bare,
 Away from the tender Shepherd's care."

Everlasting love brought Him to Sychar!
Everlasting love led Him to speak to her, to ask water at her hands — that He might give her the living water that alone could satisfy her thirsty soul!