Guilty As Charged

Standard

It’s 35* outside. I have a warm robe wrapped around me (thanks to my sis-in-law). I’m eating an apple, because you know what they say…an apple a day…and I’m thinking I could get used to being a stay-at-home mom. Except I don’t have kids. I do have a dog. That has to count for something. He needs a bath. He needs his teeth brushed. He needs a haircut. He needs to be fed. I deserve “Mom of the Year.”

Uh hum. Anyway. Do you remember the story in the bible where the elders of the church and the Pharisees brought the adulteress woman to Jesus and they were all like, “Hey, we caught this woman red-handed committing adultery. Back in the day, Moses said in the Law that we should stone her. What do you think?” I love what Jesus did next. See, they were trying to trick Jesus into telling them to stone her, to do away with her. But instead, he simply bent down and began to write in the dirt. They kept badgering him and bothering him to answer them so he straightened up, looked them in the eyes, and said, “The sinless one among you, go first. Throw the stone. The one without sin, you throw it.” Let me pause for a minute. I love this part. I can just see it all going down in my mind. Jesus is all cool as a cucumber and these religious men are acting a fool, trying to get Jesus to “give them the go-ahead to stone this adulteress lady.” But Jesus, being the most gracious, forgiving Man to ever walk the earth and heaven, just looks at them and basically tells them, “Sure, go ahead. Stone her. BUT here’s the catch: only those that are sinless can throw any stones.” I bet she was standing there, her heart pounding in her chest, thinking what the heck is about to go down right now?!?!?!?! The verses go on to say that the elders and the Pharisees began to leave, one by one because, SHOCKER, none of them were sinless. So there stood Jesus and this “horrible, worthless, no good, adulteress” woman. And guess what? Jesus didn’t start condemning her. He didn’t say, “Listen hear lady, you’re real lucky I didn’t have you stoned to death. Cause I coulda done it.” Nope. He looked at her and said, “Did anyone condemn you?” And she replied that no one had condemned her. And this is my favorite part, Jesus looked at her and said, “Neither do I. Now, go on your way and don’t sin.” Holy cow. I have goose bumps just typing this. None of us are sinless. Not a single one of us. But Jesus still offers his forgiveness and His grace EVERY SINGLE DAY. Think about that. In Romans 8 it says that there isn’t any condemnation for those that are in Christ Jesus. Talk about humbling. How quick am I to judge people? Or even judge myself from time to time, thinking that I’m not worthy of God’s grace. And the truth is, I’m really not worthy. But His grace is extended freely and mercifully. I think a lot of times, we feel like our sin is just too much. How could we possibly pray or ask God to work in our lives or even forgive us because of the sin in our heart?!?! But Jesus didn’t come to condemn. He came to restore us and to take away our guilt. And because that forgiveness has been shown to us, it’s our duty, our responsibility as christians, to show that same forgiveness and love to EVERYONE around us. Not just to the people sitting in the chair next to us at church who we think is a christian without sin. Not just to the person who is nice to us. Not just to the coworkers we like. To EVERYONE. Jesus wasn’t picky when he died on the cross for our sin and showed us the ultimate example of grace. So we can’t be picky either. We are all guilty as charged, we are all full of imperfections, but I interrupt this broadcast with important news: there’s a God full of grace and mercy with arms wide open willing to take that guilt away. And boy, am I glad.

Much Love, Rach

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