Our house has three bathrooms, and right now, every one of them is being used for nighttime bathing.

The boys (the Philistines, as Corey calls them) are splashing together in one tub. In the other two bathrooms, the showers are running for the girls.

Teyla is in the master bathroom, around the corner from my desk. She can't see me, but I can see her, because of a mirror on our dresser. She is dancing under the falling water, reaching her arms up to touch the stream, laughing as the spray chokes out her song. Streams fall from her pony tails - which I leave in 90% of the time now, because I am so over detangling her curly hair - and she is completely unaware of herself.

That kind of freedom mesmerizes me. It's beauty, through and through.

Sunday morning, our pastor taught on the passage in John where the Pharisees fling an adulteress as Jesus' feet. She has been caught in the act, and yes, that means exactly what you think. This woman, she is really just a pawn. The Pharisees aren't bringing her to Jesus to get his input. They are trying to trap him into saying something which they can use against him.

My heart always beats wild at this story. I have played that woman on stage many times. Many. To the point where a part of her lives in my soul. I imagine the crowd jeering, the men haughty. The terror. The embarrassment. The shame. Exposed publicly in your worst sin. Naked. She must have laid, cowering, at Jesus' feet, shaking violently, hiding her face, waiting for the stones to fall.

But Jesus, in a move that is classic Jesus, doesn't answer her accusers about whether or not she deserves death. He simply bends down and writes in the sand. The crowd badgers him for an answer. He rises and says the line almost everyone knows, even if you aren't a believer: "Let him who is without sin throw the first stone."

The text says that, one by one, the men slink away. When they are gone, Jesus - the only one in the crowd who has never sinned, the only one qualified to throw a stone - simply asks, "Who condemns you?"

"No one, Lord."

"Neither do I. Go and sin no more."

I don't know what happened to the woman after that. But in my mind, she did exactly what Jesus prescribed. She went home and probably took a bath and maybe, if Jesus words sank in deep enough, she was naked without shame, for the first time in a long time.

Maybe she even danced under the stream of water, completely unaware of herself.


Linking up with Heather's Just Write today.


  1. Oh this is beautiful Kelly! Well done.

  2. Without a doubt the most beautiful, moving, powerful, amazing reflection on that story I've ever heard. I will never hear it or read it again without thinking of this writing and the hopeful picture you've painted of what might be the rest of the story.

  3. Beautiful post. What grace. What freedom.