Straightening up, Jesus said to her, “Woman, where are they?  Did no one condemn you?”  She said, “No one, Lord.”  And Jesus said, “I do not condemn you, either.  Go.  From now on sin no more.”  John 8:10-11

The teachers of the law and the Pharisees made a daring attempt to set Jesus up for a fall, but instead Jesus used the situation as a life-changing lesson (John 8:1-9.)  Their first mistake was thinking they knew more than Jesus.

In my own life, there have been times when I’ve thought my way was the best way.  That attitude has found me like these men—with egg on my face!  Jesus is author and creator of all we’re to live by, yet we show our gratitude for His provision by thinking we know more.  Just as in this situation, He will be gentle in His redirection if we’re willing to listen.

Imagine how the woman must have felt standing before the Messiah—her chin touching her chest because that was as far as she could bow her shamed head.  Hands clasped in front of her with dust on her feet and her hair loose and tangled.  Jesus saw past all that.  We hear compassion in His question and response.  He did not condemn her either and sent her on her way with instruction for moving forward. A clean slate. A do-over.

Do-overs come with a responsibility.  Confession and repentance.  We have to lay the sin down, for good, and walk away in order to begin anew.  I’m grateful for do-overs.  Jesus wants to teach us through these moments, if we’ll let Him.

Ponder your gratitude for your do-overs. If you have unconfessed sin, talk it out with God.  Then, confess and repent.  Take time to praise God for sending His Son so that we can be forgiven and allowed a fresh start.  Express your gratitude by writing a praise to the One who does not condemn us.

About Barbara Oden

Barbara Oden, a freelance writer and speaker, started writing in elementary school. One of her stories in second grade was sent to Highlight's magazine by her school principle. Since then, she's been hooked! Barbara embraces the fact that she is God's work in progress--in a constant state of growth and change. Published in four anthologies, she uses her sense of humor and personal life experiences to show women they don't have to be a slave to their past. She encourages them to give their hurts over to God and then demonstrates how to get up, dust off, and live life as God intended. Living in the Texas county which hosts the annual Mosquito Festival (they're coming, so we might as well celebrate their arrival), Barbara enjoys cooking, pampering her dachshund Matilda, and texting her son and new daughter-in-law who live inthe Dallas area. Most of all, she enjoys her daily adventures with Jesus and serving in her home church. Barbara invites you to visit her website at
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