Then turning toward the woman, he said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave me no water for my feet, but she has bathed my feet with her tears and dried them with her hair. You gave me no kiss, but from the time I came in she has not stopped kissing my feet. You did not anoint my head with oil, but she has anointed my feet with ointment. Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven; hence she has shown great love. But the one to whom little is forgiven loves little.” Then he said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.” But those who were at the table with him began to say among themselves, “Who is this who even forgives sins?” But he said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.” - Luke 7:44-50
Our two-year-old daughter surprised us one day when she started talking about “bad guys.” Now she will point to a random person or character toy and call it a “bad guy.” It’s clear that she doesn’t understand yet what those words mean, but as she grows older that phrase will take on more of a shape and meaning. I’m sure that we all have a picture in our mind of a “bad guy,” but they are human beings just like us. They are people who may have made different choices or were in different circumstances that brought them to where they are today. As Christians, it is hard to see people living a life or making choices that we don’t agree with. We put ourselves in a different category than them. We think of ourselves as better than them.
Jesus, however, views us all as the same. There is no difference. We are all sinners in his eyes. In this reading, we see a woman who shows all of her emotions without holding back. She is willing to kneel down and clean Jesus’ feet with her own tears and hair. How many of us would be able to show that kind of emotion and faith in a room full of people who are clearly looking down on us? How many times have we been the people sitting there looking down on someone whom we consider to be at a lower status than us for whatever reason?
Relatability is crucial. In Children’s Worship a highly requested song is This Little Light of Mine. It doesn’t matter what your income is, what clothes you wear or where you live. Everyone has their own light that shines to the people around them. Every category of sinner is needed. I know that I am more likely to listen to someone who has been through what I have or has had the same struggles that I have. We need people who can get down on that level and say, “I’ve been there,” rather than sitting at a distance not wanting to or not being able to understand. Sharing experiences that we’ve had, even the ugly ones, could greatly affect someone else’s story.
Every single person is an important part of the body of Christ because their light shines out to people who might not be able to see a light at all.
Let’s remember that we are all on a level playing field in God’s mind and that we can all help each other to know God better.
Thank you for all the individual lights that we get to see. Let us remember that we are all the same in your eyes. Amen.