Sunday: Psalm 32 & Luke 7:36-50

From Anna Harris

She didn’t say a word. But apparently, words weren’t necessary.

The story in Luke 7:36-50 didn’t fit my neat little formula for how you obtain God’s forgiveness. My formula is 1) acknowledge that what you did was wrong, 2) tell God you are sorry for X attitude, thought, behavior, and 3) ask for and accept His forgiveness. This woman’s approach? 1) Come near to Jesus, 2) cry on His feet, 3) dry His feet with your hair, 4) kiss His feet and anoint them with perfume. In response to the man who judged this woman as a “sinner,” Jesus said plainly: “Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little (v. 47).” Then Jesus focused on the woman who was still kissing his feet as if no one else was in the room, as if she hadn’t noticed the judgement and disgust hanging in the air. And He said: “Thy sins are forgiven…Thy faith hath saved thee; go in peace (v. 48 & 50).”

She didn’t have to say anything because He was kind. He was kind and He knew her sin, her regret, her brokenness, her shame, her humility, her hope. Jesus reminds me in this story of someone who interrupts a friend’s apology before she can finish, stopping her dead in her tracks with words of sincere forgiveness. Of someone who doesn’t make his friend grovel for her wrongdoings before eagerly offering forgiveness. Of someone who is Kind.


I am a transplant from rural Texas who grew to love Boston after moving here for grad school. I am a social worker who is currently not practicing social work and I am totally okay with that!