12. being or considered a sister; related by or as if by sisterhood: sister ships.
13. having a close relationship with another because of shared interests, problems, or the like.
I have been undeniably blessed by precious women in my life. Some close family, some that lived before my time, some have rubbed me hard smoothing away jagged edges, some young, some old, some who know my heart deeply and still love me, some I've never met. But all sharing a common relation, fellowship birthed from the blood of Jesus. Sweet family, a gift. These women have so energized my Christian walk I just had to introduce some of them to you. (I hope you will post a comment and tell me about the women who have blessed your life.)
This week's sister:
Shameful, broken, unloved. I wonder if you've ever felt that way. I'd like to wrap myself in a churchy shawl of holier-than-thou and pretend I haven't, but it would be a lie. This week's sister was no stranger to sin. Perhaps she was wounded as a girl. She could have been a rebel at heart, hating the confines of law. Maybe it began innocently enough, one decision leading to another until she found herself farther from God than she ever intended to wander. What ever the case may be, she was well aware of her neediness.
The teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a woman caught in adultery. They made her stand before the group and said to Jesus, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery. In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?”...he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” Again he stooped down and wrote on the ground. At this, those who heard began to go away one at a time, the older ones first, until only Jesus was left, with the woman still standing there. Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?”“No one, sir,” she said.“Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.” (John 8)
Broken, life battered, suffering at the hands of others as well as her own, she is my sister. Your sister. We're alike in need and in grace. Of all the women in the Bible she may be the one I love most. She stood bare before Jesus, on the brink of death, guilty. Deserving to die, she received grace. She looked up, where were her accusers? Gone, the guilty can not condemn the guilty. Mercy chooses not to.
How about you, do you live free? Or, do you walk back to the mob, hand them their rocks of condemnation and refuse forgiveness in favor of guilt? You are not condemned.