Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Unrestrained Gift Giving he was reclining at table,a woman came with an alabaster flask of ointmentof pure nard, very costly, and she broke the flaskand poured it over his head.

Mark 14:3b

After over thirty years of marriage my husband and I don’t give gifts much to each other. It’s not that we don’t think they’re important – more like, what more precious gift can we give than time with each other! Of course, the realities of mortgage payments, college tuition, retirement plans have also muscled their way into our lives. Consequently, when it comes to buying gifts, we have needed to restrain ourselves.

The woman who anoints Jesus at Bethany shows no such restraint. She blows the roof off with her gift! Whether the ointment was specifically purchased or was in her closet, she gives a gift that puts a strain on her financial resources. In her mind, Jesus deserved the very best, even if the cost was future stability.For most of us we have a firm grasp on a variety of things we consider "valuable." Perhaps a monetary value cannot be determined, but, whatever they are it’s certain that losing or giving them away would be painful.

Jesus, didn’t ask for the woman’s gift. She gave it willingly and generously. Her action prompts us to ask, “How generous am I in showing my love for Jesus?”

From jobs, to homes, to wanting to be married, to children, to spouses, to retirement accounts--whatever it may be that you hold as valuable, are you willing to pour it generously over the head of Jesus?

Jesus, I love you with all my heart, soul and mind.
And while I want to give generously to You, I struggle.
Help me to remember the woman from Bethany
each time my fingers curl around that which I think is valuable.

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