When you look at the large framed photo hanging over the mantle place in a Mormon Home, what do you usually expect to see? A family photo wearing white & denim, the Family Proclamation, or maybe something involving chevron? As part of my #unsabbatical from Mormonism, I am saying “Yes!” to everything. Saturday night I got an invitation to attend Ward Choir the next morning in the home of a ward member, so of course I went. I was very surprised what this family had hanging above their mantle place.
They had a depiction of the woman taken in adultery presented to the Savior. The piece is titled, “He That is Without Sin,” by Liz Lemon Swindle. I thought it was such an odd choice. It certainly isn’t the happiest story. I found myself pondering, the message of the painting, and how a parent might apply it to the setting of a home.
The part of the story that always touches me is when her accusers leave. Jesus asks the woman if any man condemns her. Confirming that no man accuses her, the Savior adds, “Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.” (John 8:11)
Home is meant to be a place of refuge from the storms of life. Sometimes those storm takes a toll on us and we are damaged. Our homes should be a safe harbor where the family can come for healing and repair. I would surmise that this painting is hanging to remind the children of the Lord’s Atonement and His forgiveness. I never want my children to fear to speak to me when they make a mistake. I want them to always know that I will not condemn them, but lovingly entreat them to repent and try again.
Last month, Garren was irreverent on the stand when he went to bare testimony. I walked up, took him by the hand, and walked him off the stand and out the door to an empty classroom for a discussion. After church, I asked him to apologize to the Bishop. Our wonderful Bishop was loving and forgiving. He was the perfect model of the Redeemer.
It was such a great teaching experience for Garren and myself. Some day Garren might have something more serious to discuss with he Bishop. I want him to remember this experience and remember that his Bishop with love him no matter what and will help him find peace through the Atonement of Christ.
You can see our other #unsabbatical posts and here are some of my other victories this week on Instagram: