Where Does He Stand?
What did Jesus draw in the sand, on that day, long ago? The woman was thrust at his feet, and the crowd was ready, itching to kill. It's no secret: the woman was a sinner. We don't know how she became the adulterer. We don't know why she chose that path in life...
but Jesus knew.
Jesus knew her story. He saw the little girl, long ago, before life had gotten the best of her. He knew every defining moment in her life, that brought her to the moment where she lays at his feet. The thing we tend to believe, is that God is not in touch with our story. As if, when we are thrust at his feet in sin, or sorrow, that he is surprised to see us there.
He is not.
Jesus made a point of drawing in the sand that day, and while we will never know what exactly he drew in the dirt, I think there is a more important truth to the whole story that we can cling too.
We tend to draw lines, do we not?
"I've done it now. God won't forgive me" Line drawn. "You hurt me, we are done." Line drawn. "You didn't save me, when I needed rescuing."
Had the crowd been the ones drawing in the sand, I think we know what they would have drawn: a line separating them...from her. Yes, that's what we do, we beings of flesh and bone. We draw lines all over the place....and those lines separate us from each other, from God...from grace. This woman, she represents all of us; broken, alone, scared. We don't see that, though. We see the line separating us from her. We pretend that the line we've drawn somehow keeps us safe, as if God sees that line and says, "Oh, good, you stand on that side of the line." Our fear that we will not be enough if we are exposed as we really are, it propels us to cast judgement elsewhere. But, we forget something...
God is paying attention.
He sees every moment. The ones that break pieces of our heart, the ones that harden pieces of our heart...he sees every moment, and he knows how we got from point A to B. He knows what exactly brings us to the point of laying at his feet, broken, filled with sorrow or shame. Don't believe that he has ever turned his eyes from you, even for a second. I know the temptation to believe it. Where was he, when I suffered abuse as a child? Where was he when I cried, alone, carrying the burden of my secret?
Where was he?
Jesus did something beautiful on that day, in that moment...with that woman at his feet. Whether he drew a line in the dirt, or drew a picture, or words...he was doing something very powerful in that moment. He was looking at that crowd, that angry crowd, and was saying, without words that he stands with the broken.
He stands with the broken.
He was on the side of the shamed, the broken, the sorrowful...he was letting every know that his line in the sand was drawn.
And he was on her side.
He's on your side, too. Remember, he knows your story. He sees every tear that falls when you are alone. He knows the memory that fills your heart, and breaks it, at times. He knows. He was there, even in your darkest moment, he was watching, and tears were trailing his cheeks. Remember, he wasn't rescued from his sorrow, either. He chose it. He chose it...for you...so he could stand with you in your sorrow, and know it well. It is in our darkest moment, that we can know him most intimately. The woman laying at his feet, she knew him then, better than the crowd.
While the crowd stood on the other side of their line, casting judgment, she was touching the feet of the Master.
Jesus is the eternal optimist. He never looks at our life and feels hopeless. Everything he touches comes to life...and he knows it. He knows that if we will allow him to touch the death in our hearts...it will turn to life.
It will turn into life.
I am proof of it; proof that broken, afraid, angry, ashamed...that those are all okay ways to lay at his feet. I am proof that he is on our side.
He is on our side.
Maybe you face this day, and you feel alone, ashamed, or just broken down by life. Lean in and listen, friend. Fractured hearts are welcome, here.
Fractured hearts are welcome.
Nothing stays broken in his presence. You don't need a plan, you don't need a line drawn around your heart. If you will just lay down at his feet, he will give you rest, and he will heal your brokenness. He will look to the crowd, and he will draw in the dirt, separating him and you...from them. He will look to the crowd, and he will say,
"We are together."
I've needed this reminder, too, lately. I've needed to remember that Jesus is on my side, that he is not only on my side, but that he is kneeling in the dirt beside me, sheltering me from every. single. stone.
You aren't alone, friend...
The God of the universe is on your side...
His line is drawn...
He stands with you.