“Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing.” –Luke 23:34
“I tell you, her sins—and they are many—have been forgiven, so she has shown me much love. But a person who is forgiven little shows only little love.” Then Jesus said to the woman, “Your sins are forgiven.” (Luke 7:47–48 NLT)
Augustine, in his Confessions, lays out the deeds of his life up to that point, confessing to God and the world the sins he committed against God and man. He does not hold back anything, even digging into when he was a baby. “Who can recall to me the sin I did in my infancy? For in thy sight no one is clean of sin, not even the infant whose life is but one day upon earth.” Augustine understood the deep, pervasive, and ugly nature of his sin, which is why his autobiography is not simply a confession, but a book full of adoration for the God who forgives.
Like Augustine, the woman who washed Jesus’s feet with expensive perfume, her tears, and her hair understood the deep debt that had been forgiven. She did not shower Jesus with adoration because her deeds were more perverse or more costly than those of her peers or those of Simon, the host whose dinner she was crashing. Rather, she, like Augustine, looked deep into her own heart to see the darkness that was there and recognized the only light that could penetrate such darkness was found in Jesus. Take a page out of Augustine’s book today by writing out your confession to God; end this time by following in the footsteps of the woman from Luke 7 by showering Jesus with gratitude and affection in recognition that you have been forgiven.