You already know… ♥
We are continuing our 30 Days of Gratitude! If you missed the scoop about why we’re celebrating, be sure to check out Episode One. Yesterday, we talked about how to be grateful even when you feel like you’re being misunderstood. Today, we’re going to be discussing Day Nine’s Topic: Come Here, Woman!
This is honestly one of my favorite chapters in my book. This chapter is about a woman in the bible who was caught in the act of adultery. Now I’m not sure of all the logistics, and it seems kinda shady that a group of men would catch a woman in the act of adultery… but Jesus wasn’t in the business of spilling tea, so some stuff we will never fully know. However, this is what we find when we come on the scene: a woman who was caught in the act of adultery was brought before Jesus for judgment.
Now we all know that according to biblical standards and the laws of the land we live in (if you live in America) that adultery is wrong. Let’s just establish that before we move forward.
In the story (which can be found in John 8:1-11), Jesus was at the Temple early one morning. As usual, a group of people gathered, and He began to teach them. Let me put a pin right there and say this. If you are called to do something, there will always be people for you to do it for. Remember that. As Jesus was teaching these people, a group of teachers and Pharisees came with the woman who had been caught in adultery. Now if you don’t know what Pharisees are, think of them as the stuck up and self-righteous people you have encountered in your life. No judgment, though. Anyway, they came to Jesus with this woman, and they were always trying to trip Him up in some way. That’s another thing. When you are doing what God put you here to do, there will always be people who will try to trip you up. They’ll try to use your words against you. They’ll try to use what you believe in and stand on against you. Now if you remember the podcast I did about church folks, you’ll remember that I said that Jesus had comebacks for days. DAYS.
So here come the teachers and Pharisees, and they say (and I’m paraphrasing), “Jesus, we caught this woman in adultery, and the law of Moses says to stone her. So what do you say?” Now the New Living Translation of the Bible says, “They were trying to trap Him into saying something they could use against Him, but Jesus stooped down and wrote in the dust with His finger. They kept demanding an answer, so He stood up again and said, ‘All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!’ The He stooped down again and wrote in the dust. When the accusers heard this, they slipped away one by one, beginning with the oldest, until only Jesus was left in the middle of the crowd with the woman. Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman, ‘Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you?’ ‘No, Lord’, she said. And Jesus said, ‘Neither do I Go and sin no more.’”
And that was it. That’s the last we heard of her.
Usually, I would give you three things to be thankful for, but today, I’m only going to give you one.
Be grateful for the stones that fell to the ground.
I could spend time telling you about how we should be gracious towards others and how we should give others the same grace we wish to receive… but if there is one thing I am coming to realize the older I get, it’s that so many people aren’t even aware of the grace they have received.
We get so caught up in what everybody else is doing to us. We love to tell people, “Well God said, ‘Vengeance is mine, I will repay’ and He’s gonna get you for what you did to me” – but we forget that the same measure we give is what is gonna be given to us. So when we say “God’s gonna get you for what you did to me,” what follows that is “God’s gonna get me for what I did to so-and-so”. How would you feel if every time you said the first thing, the second one happened?
Now I’m not telling you to be passive and let people run or walk all over you. But what I AM telling you is that we must be careful about being so quick to want to see others suffer. That’s a dangerous place to be in because you never know when you’re gonna need grace yourself. If you already know and believe that God is gonna handle something, let God handle it. Don’t add your wishes for someone’s demise… because if your wishes for someone else’s demise are supposed to come true, then someone else’s wishes for your demise are supposed to come true. We forget how that works. We don’t have a monopoly on God. We don’t have a monopoly on grace.
Back to the stones. Be grateful for the times when you know you were wrong, but you weren’t given what you deserved. The time you really were speeding but you got a warning ticket. The time the car repair was supposed to cost $500 but it cost you $350. Be grateful for the times when you hurt your friend or your spouse or even a family member, and you thought it was over, but instead of being given the boot, you were given another chance. Just think about it.
I’m not telling you that you have to go and be friends with everyone who ever hurt you. I’m not telling you not to address people about the wrongdoing they perpetrate against you. I’m not saying any of that. I’m telling you to think about the times when grace was extended to you. I’m telling you to be grateful for those times.
Why? Because in life, you’re gonna meet people who have struggled with the same things you’ve struggled with… and in order to effectively minister to them, you’re gonna have to remember the grace that got you through the struggle. You’re gonna have to remember the rocks that hit the ground when they very well could have hit you.
Jesus, by law and by virtue of Himself, could have stoned that woman. He was the only one in the crowd who was without sin. But He didn’t. Instead, He hit her with grace. And don’t get it twisted. Please don’t get it twisted. Grace isn’t a cloak that covers your wrong. Grace is a cape that empowers you to do right. Be grateful for it. Seriously. Sit down, take a moment, and think about it.
I’m done. Have an AMAZING day and be GREAT! I speak life to you and everyone and everything connected to you! Catch me tomorrow!
Bonus: Check out this amazing song by Tye Tribbett called “When the Rocks Hit the Ground” (visible on podcast notes on my website only). ♥