When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee? (Jn 8:10)
The religious leaders of Jesus' day brought him a woman found having an adulterous affair and proceeded to accuse her of it in front of everyone. They were the gossips, the news broadcasters, and she was the headline.
IT'S HER FAULT!
But Jesus didn't even acknowledge they'd spoken. Instead, He knelt down and began writing in the sand, until every one of the people involved walked away. Then, in private, He forgave her. (Jn 8:10-11)
Bizarre. I mean, turn on the news, and we do the opposite every day. It's his fault or her fault or their fault. Look at what he did, and can you believe she had the nerve to do this or that? We talk about family members, friends, neighbors, celebrities, and a string of other people we haven't met without giving it another thought.
Especially when what they did turns out to be true. That justifies it. After all, we're allowed to talk about sin when it was actually sin. Aren't we?
Jesus didn't. He didn't blame her at all. In fact, He protected her. When was the last time you did that?
IT'S MY FAULT!
A list of "10 traits of an alpha male" caught my eye the other day, and I got stuck on number four - You Blame Others.
An alpha male takes responsibility for his own actions. He doesn't seek out excuses to make himself seem less culpable; he knows that his hard work and persistence will eventually turn the tide in his favor, so he doesn't sweat owning up to his mistakes.
In my head, blame is like driving your car into a telephone pole and blaming the telephone company for putting the pole there. They should have known on October 12, 2014, you'd drive your car that way and need the space.
Yet, once again, we do this all the time. We blame the woman taken in adultery, instead of leading her to Christ. We blame the homeless drunk, instead of finding out he served in Vietnam and saw too much death. We blame the unwed mother, the player, the cultural icon ... anyone but ourselves.
But Jesus has already set us an example of how to behave. Sometimes, we need to kneel down and start writing in the sand until the air's been let out of the situation. Then look the person or situation in the eye and say, "I forgive you."
Or even better, "I was wrong."
His gaze seemed made for her alone, the curve of his mouth fashioned solely to bring her enjoyment, and for a moment in time, she melted into it, lost to the war and the frayed edges of her life.
Caught up in an adulterous love affair, Charlotte Lake can only blame herself for how miserable it’s become. After all, she chose to become the “other woman” and with that choice, betrayed everything holy about marriage.
When her secret threatens to emerge, however, she finds her only salvation in the kind, gentle hands of sailor, Nashville Jaeger. If she’ll trust him, he knows a way out.
But the biggest thing he brings into her life is perhaps the greatest gift of all – forgiveness – and with it, a piece of his heart.
A story of God’s willingness to heal any heart by best-selling author, SUZANNE D. WILLIAMS.
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Suzanne D. Williams
Suzanne Williams Photography
Suzanne Williams is a native Floridian, wife, and mother, with a penchant for spelling anything, who happens to love photography.