Jesus straightened up and asked her, "Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?"
She was walking toward me with an angelic grin on her face. I knew her. I welcomed her face. I couldn't remember her name.
What was happening to me? I talked with her almost every week. I considered her a friend. Why was her name escaping me?
Did my brain fall out during the fourth birth?
Would I set a World Record for earliest onset of Alzheimer's?
Does this ever happen to you? Even someone you know can become nameless in a single moment.
I struggle to remember names and I find most people struggle with mine. Just today someone called me Mrs. Milhouse and then peered at me strangely when I didn't respond immediately.
This afternoon Mrs. Milhouse reflected on the nameless women of the Bible. Countless women had life-changing interactions with Jesus but are known to the modern world simply as "woman". As I reflected on these encounters, I saw the dusty streets of ancient Israel with Whitney Houston belting, "I'm Every Woman" in the background.
Nameless men and women cross my path each day. I have the opportunity to stop and see them. But do I?
The woman who needs diapers for her newborn.
The man struggling with identity during a season of unemployment.
The girl who hides her worry behind a smile.
Today I will encounter the nameless, the unknown, Jesus' kind of people. I can choose to see. I can choose to bring His grace into their self-condemnation. I can introduce nameless people like me to the Name above all names.