When I was a very young child, I had a desire to learn to tell time by the clock. Now, you must remember in my childhood days there were no digital clocks or anything else. So, my mother for several breaks that she had would teach me about the “little hand” and the “big hand.”

This was her way of teaching me to understand there are minutes and hours on a clock. I could learn fast by remembering the place of the little and big hand on the clock. My mother was a great cook and very good at baking cakes. At this point I will change this to a li’l boy and his mother. Someone else okay.

This li’l boy was in the kitchen and his mother had a clock on the kitchen wall. She asked her son, “What was the li’l hand on? Her son yelled back, “a chocolate chip cookie!” Caught in the very act.

In chapter 8 of John’s gospel he recounts a story about a woman who was broke, ashamed, afraid and caught in the act.

This story takes place while Jesus was teaching. The scribes and the pharisees burst in dragging a woman who had been caught in the act of adultery. They were not concerned for this woman. She was just a pawn on the chessboard of this confrontation.

They thought they could trap Jesus. Jesus just bends down and writes on the ground with His finger. What Jesus wrote I do not know. Jesus told these hypocrites “If you don’t have any sin, then stone her.” They couldn’t do it because they were guilty. How would they be able to catch her in the very act unless they were familiar with her and where she would be and the time to catch her. Why didn’t they bring the man she was with? Hypocrites!

If you ever wondered how God reacts when you fail, when you blow it, when you mess up, when you are guilty, when you are caught with your li’l hand in the cookie jar — know this, Jesus loves you and will not condemn you. He will forgive you and say “I do not condemn you go and sin no more.”

Condemning sinners is not my job or yours. But condemning sin is. Jesus turned this woman’s brokenness into blessings. And you are invited to let Jesus do the same for you.

You might be down, but never out with Jesus. I had to learn what hand my mother was speaking of the hand on the clock or the hand in the cookie jar.

No matter which hand, I knew she loved me, and she had told my sister this, “I could not have asked for a better li’l boy.” With her I might have been down, but never out. Thank you, Lord Jesus.

The Rev. Kerry Price Sr. is the pastor at Breath of Life Church at Pine Bluff.

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