Holy Tuesday: Pouring From Our Hearts
Praise God, for His compassion and mercies are new every morning!
Sing: Alabaster Jar
Read God’s Word
While Jesus was in Bethany in the home of Simon the Leper, a woman came to Him with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, which she poured on His head as He was reclining at the table.
When the disciples saw this, they were indignant. “Why this waste?” they asked. “This perfume could have been sold at a high price and the money given to the poor.”
Aware of this, Jesus said to them, “Why are you bothering this woman? She has done a beautiful thing to Me. The poor you will always have with you, but you will not always have Me. When she poured this perfume on My body, she did it to prepare Me for burial. Truly I tell you, wherever this gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her.”
This passage is exceedingly beautiful for the romantic and particularly problematic for the pragmatic. To navigate this, let’s look carefully at the text.
There was no doubt that the perfume was expensive. The word “poured” shows that this devotion was extravagant – the woman did not hold back her love for Jesus.
The disciples, however, were indignant, because the money spent could have been used to help the poor! Jesus’ reply acknowledges the poor and implied that their desire to aid the poor was not wrong. But the disciples needed to see the beauty and the importance of the Passion week.
God is a God who loves us with no reserves. Thus, wherever the good news is preached, this act will be told. The Gospel or the good news is a story of lavish and extravagant love with no reserves. Like the perfume being poured out, God’s love for us poured out at the cross was extravagant.
Therefore, only freely-poured out love without reservations is truly fitting for a God like this. Let’s allow ourselves to love extravagantly, because He is worthy of all our devotion. In doing so, we walk in the fullness of God’s gift of life to us.
Reflect: Is my love for God extravagant?
O Lord God, there is none like You! You are the Prodigal Father who waits for me to come home. You patiently give me time to come to my senses. When I do, You slay the fattened calf and rejoice! O wretched one that I am, how far do I have to go before I grasp the depth of Your love? Father, You are incomparably rich and immensely generous. When I have You, I have so much more!
Truly, Lord, all that I have comes from You…whether in plenty or in hunger, in abundance or in need, may I sing forever, “Whom have I in heaven but You? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides You. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever” (Psalm 73:25-26). Father I desire this unshakable confidence to live by Your grace alone, to trust You with all my heart and strength. And in doing so, let my life overflow in extravagant love, overflowing praise of You, and exceeding joy that shows the world Who I adore! In Jesus’ precious name I pray, amen!