Have you noticed how when some humans grow old, their crests change colour? Yes, and they end up having to put boot polish or bleach on their heads to disguise what’s happening! Well, one day a little human girl was sitting in her kitchen, watching her mother do the washing-up at the sink. And she noticed that several strands of white were starting to appear amongst her mother’s brunette hair. And she simply had to ask the question: “Why do you have some white hairs mum?” To which her mother replied: “Well, every time you do something wrong and make me unhappy, one of my hairs turns white.” The little girl thought about this for a few moments and then asked: “So how come all of grandma’s hairs are white?”
Just as well the little girl’s mum wasn’t right in what she said because poor old Jesus would have ended up looking just like Santa Claus! The wonderful thing about Jesus is that He doesn’t notch up a score or a visual reminder of every occasion when we disappoint Him. The Christian faith is all about forgiveness, love and compassion.
My owner recently went to visit someone in hospital. It was a bit of an effort for him to go because he’s still recovering from his own recent surgery and not quite firing on all cylinders. But he went none-the-less because he sensed that God very much wanted him to go. You see, the person he was visiting wasn’t recovering from a usual illness or operation. No, they’d done something that was rather silly and then attempted to take their own life afterwards. So they were now being cared for on a secure ward. Once inside, my owner was ushered into a quiet side room with the troubled patient.
And the first thing that they asked was this: “Do you know what I’ve done? Do you know all of it? And yet you still want to come and see me?” My owner most certainly did want to be there because he knew that deep down, the person in front of him was not a bad person at all. There were genuine reasons why they’d behaved as they had. And although this person was now expecting to be shunned by my owner and the rest of the world, what they desperately needed right there and then was to sense the love of God. The same love which instead of condemning us, simply wants to help and save us and to make us whole once more.
Whenever my owner stands up to take a service in church, he knows he’s being a hypocrite because he’s far from pure himself. But he also knows God well enough to understand that it really doesn’t matter. Because none of us is free of sin, yet all of us are invited to God’s table. And there are no white hairs to be seen in Heaven!
“I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in Heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent.”
“When they kept on questioning him, he (Jesus) straightened up and said to them, ‘If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.’ … At this, those who heard began to go away one at a time…” (John 8:7-9 condensed)