Prepare: You will need an empty cookie jar, with crumbs in it would be even better. If you want to have a cookie or small treat ready at the end that is fine, but not necessary. Just make sure you think about allergies!
I know what you’re thinking. It’s pretty disappointing to see me come in with an empty cookie jar, isn’t it? Well, I think that I ate them all. I didn’t mean to, but I just couldn’t help myself! Do you forgive me? Oh, good.
You know, today’s Gospel story is about forgiveness, too, but it’s kind of funny how Jesus talks about it. In the story there is a woman who has had a bad life, and she has done some bad things so that she could survive and have food to eat. When the other people see her with Jesus, they tell Jesus that he should leave her alone, that she is not a good person to be seen with. Instead, Jesus turns to the woman and tells her that all of her sins are forgiven!
Well, that makes the other people a little angry. They know that she has done bad stuff, most of them think that she has done far worse things than any of them, and they tell Jesus what they think. Now here’s the funny, or strange part. Jesus says, “She has done lots of bad things. When I forgive her she loves me more. You have done very few bad things, so for you my forgiveness is not such a deal. But for her, forgiveness is life and love.”
Hmmmm. So, do you think that means that we should do bad things so that God forgives us, so that we can love God more? Should I be happy about eating all the cookies because that means I can love you more? That seems a little backwards, doesn’t it?
I think what Jesus is saying is God love all of us enough to forgive whatever we do wrong, whether it is something big or something small. We should not be angry about God forgiving other people, because they deserve forgiveness, too. It also means that we should live like people who are loved and forgiven. Always doing our best to love each other as God loves us.
Merciful God, thank you for the amazing gift of forgiveness in our lives. Thank you for the forgiveness that you show to us, and thank you for the ways that we can forgive others. Teach us to live in your love and to share your love with everyone we meet. Amen
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