The word “and” can make a lot of difference. For example, it can cause anxiety, like “The meeting is tomorrow AND the report is due”; or joy, like “Grandma’s coming AND she’s bringing a cake.” When it comes to spiritual matters, there’s a lot of “and” words too. Consider this one:
“Neither do I condemn you,” said Jesus. “Go, and from now on do not sin anymore.” – John 8:11 HCSB
The first part of the verse is often quoted, but what about the command part? The idea of Jesus putting Jewish leaders in their place and a woman getting a second chance are wonderful thoughts…but then the pesky “and” must be dealt with. There’s a temptation to conveniently rush past the fact that Jesus actually expected something from her after the encounter. To be clear, it wasn’t to earn His forgiveness (He had already shown kindness and forgiveness); it was to demonstrate a new commitment to honor God and not herself.
What about the “and” in your life? Jesus offers grace freely to all who will receive it; however, it did come at a high personal cost to Him. May our lives be a grateful demonstration of “and” today.