She felt ugly, she knew she was ugly and she knew that her ugliness was evident to the world. She was not delusional, if she only opened her mouth they would see past her pretty clothes and magazine physique and point out the filth just beneath the surface. There is no way that anyone could see beauty because all that she saw were mistakes, addiction, bad decisions, failure, weakness, and the fresh stains of sin.
‘Mirror, mirror, on the wall, who is the fairest of them all?’ and she’d hiss at the mere thought because she knew that it would take ingenuity on the level of the spinners from the Emperor’s New Clothes, to hide her ugliness. She was no Snow White; her stains were dark and deep, drowning her in discontentment, and binding her like a python in a cycle of missteps, remorse, and repetition. Her mirror was vile, judgmental, and accusatory and every time she tried to confront that woman, she detested the face looking back at her.
It is no surprise that she found herself encircled by a crowd that was eager to hurl stones of blame and contempt at her because her sin was finally found out. She wouldn’t even try to defend herself, and she wouldn’t even bother to deny it, because she always knew that one day her truth would publicly shame her. So she accepted her fate and hopelessly resigned herself to the consequence.
The scent of her sin made even her nauseated. Who can miss that stench of rejection, brokenness, adultery, and abandonment? The purest jar of alabaster could not hide it! How she wished at that moment, that she too could kneel at His feet so that she could pour her love upon someone who would actually appreciate it.
The chants from the crowd jerked her back to the realisation that she was still standing exposed and naked before a mass of cruel faces. Strangely though, instead of feeling dread, pain, and hurt, she was washed with relief. Finally, they could see the real person and she did not need to pretend anymore. Some were shaking their fists in rage and others chidingly pointed their fingers at her, but what was most bewildering was that all their faces looked familiar. One guy’s lips were slightly tilted in a snarl, and a woman’s dark and cold eyes were staring at her as if she was looking at a decomposing carcass!
Still, despite the palpable venom of the crowd she couldn’t believe just how much relief she felt, because the expressions on all their faces were exactly like the woman in her mirror. She didn’t even recognise that it was her voice that was joined with the chorus of “stone her, kill her, crucify her”. At last, someone was brave enough to put her out of her misery!
However, the room was silent and empty and it was still just her and the dreadful woman in the mirror looking back at her! A wave of sorrow washed over her and she mourned the loss of the crowd and the possibility that it would have finally been time for her to be free of herself. All it would have taken was for someone, anyone, to throw the first stone. They would have done what she thought about doing so many times before, but couldn't because cowardice caused her to renege every single time.
Suddenly, someone else entered the room and this time it was a face that she did not recognise. This man began to walk towards her and He clearly could not see her ugliness standing there, because His eyes were soft and compassionate and He was looking straight at her. She wondered whether He somehow got lost because people like Him would never be found around people like her. He opened His mouth to speak and His voice shook the room and the mirror crashed to the floor in a heap of shattered glass. He was speaking to her and she could not take her eyes off of Him. She glared into His face as if in a daze and the longer He spoke, the more familiar His features became. His face was changing and He was beginning to look like her. No, it was actually her face that was changing, and it began to look like His.
At her feet were the shattered remains of her old reflection of sin and shame, and a new mirror stood in front of her. She looked like Him, He looked like her and He looked like Grace. He came into her space; she came into His presence and she changed. She was astonished, speechless and a little in disbelief! Then she vaguely remembered these words that He spoke: “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.”
(This is my creative adaption of the account of a nameless woman caught in the act of adultery in John 8:1-11 from the perspective of the woman as I envisioned)
Today, be reminded of these simple truths:
“Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” Isaiah 1:18
“As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us.” Psalm 103:12
“But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.” 2 Corinthians 3:18
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‘My Favourite Scriptures: A Devotional For New Believers” contains reflections on fundamental principles about God’s love, His forgiveness, your character/nature in Christ, submission and obedience, His blessings, provision, purpose and protection. In this devotional I use deeply personal experiences to make the scriptures relevant to you. This book is a reflection of the grace that God showers on me, having used my lowest points and all my failures to increase my compassion so that I can spread the message of His love to the world.