People feel disconnected. We live amongst many and yet feel alone. We spend more and more time online and in that place people are coming to us asking for someone to care. You can help. Give here.
“While he [Jesus] was in Bethany, reclining at the table in the home of Simon the Leper, a woman came with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, made of pure nard. She broke the jar and poured the perfume on His head.” (Mark 14:3)
Imagine the scene. Not long before Judas betrayed Jesus, the disciples gathered for a meal in the home of one of their friends. A woman came to Jesus and poured out a fragrant offering on His head. Did the perfume represent her life savings or her dowry or her inheritance? We’re not told the details but the value of the perfume made her gift extravagant.
Soon the Jews would crucify Jesus for claiming to be God. Jesus knew His death quickly approached; He accepted her act as preparation for His burial and called it beautiful. But not everyone saw her gesture as Jesus did.
“Some of those present were saying indignantly to one another, ‘Why this waste of perfume? It could have been sold for more than a year’s wages and the money given to the poor.’ And they rebuked her harshly.” (Mark 14:4-5)
I am frugal by nature, how would I have responded? Do I see extravagant gifts for God as a waste? Sometimes the situation calls for an outrageous gift. Jesus gave His life. Could we ever out give Him?
“‘Leave her alone,’ said Jesus. ‘Why are you bothering her? She has done a beautiful thing to me. The poor you will always have with you, and you can help them any time you want. But you will not always have me. She did what she could. She poured perfume on My body beforehand to prepare for My burial. I tell you the truth, wherever the gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her.” (Mark 14:6-9)
Holy and Gracious God, I want to give extravagantly. You gave Your life for me; help me to give my all for You. Amen
Questions: How do you view extravagant gifts for God? What keeps you from giving extravagantly?
Ed’s note: We are delighted to celebrate with Suzanne as her first novel was published on June 18th. Congratulations! You can learn more about Birthmark on Suzanne’s site http://www.suzannebenner.com