“…a woman came to Jesus with an alabaster vial of very costly perfume, and she poured it on His head as He reclined at the table. But the disciples were indignant (incensed, full of rage) when they saw this and said, ‘Why this waste? This perfume could have been sold…and money given to the poor …this woman has done a beautiful thing” (Mt. 26:6ff)
I sure would have loved to meet this amazing woman. What it must have been like in that room, while she poured her perfume upon His head. Her disposition of depth and love, totally contrasted a room full of angry and jealous disciples. A single “weak” woman, doing a unique utterly profound act, amongst “strong” men, acting in an utterly disgusting manner. She proposed an entirely new paradigm of relating to the Messiah.
What were the moments in her life that made her who she was? What caused her to think in such a way? Oh, how wonderful are the ways of God seeing individuals and responding to them according to how they respond to His Son.
How much is it worth to you to spend time alone playing on a swing and talking to Jesus? How many times has He called to you be alone but you did not respond? How many times have you considered something, or someone, to be a waste of time, when, in truth, it would have turned your life into an experience of something special?
How do you determine what is important and what is a waste? We are hard pressed, from so many angles, of anxiety and stress in this world. What are the levers and buttons within you, that you pull and push, to put you on the narrow path to still waters (Mt.7:14/Ps.23) ?
What some may determine to be a waste of time or money may be the most important decision to your future. It could involve the investment in, or the separation from, a relationship, an event, etc. It is directly linked to your state of life tomorrow. Will you miss God because you do not “see” that Jesus is worth everything in life?
As we travel and minster, at an extremely rapid and intense pace, reaching multitudes, we constantly encounter the tragedy of those who choose to devalue the treasure of salvation (Mt.13:46). What value do you put on Jesus and the matters of His gospel and kingdom? From the words you speak, and how you speak them, to what you do, and why you do it, to where you go, and for how long, you are the captain of your own ship. Jesus says you show what you treasure by where you invest your time, energy and heart (Mt.6:21).
Think about it. There was no person on earth as poor as Jesus. But yet the disciples never considered this. Jesus had nothing; “taking the form of a slave…He emptied himself” (Phil. 2:7). There was no one more deserving of “very costly perfume” than Him. Yet His closest brothers totally missed it because they improperly determined the value of Jesus. It took a little woman to bestow on Jesus the glory He deserves.
In retrospect, it is easy to be self- righteous and think you and I would never think this way, or say what they did. But what if the very same thing in them, at that time, could be within us right now, at this very moment? In the ebb and flow of boring routine life the majority devalue the worth of all things Named JESUS.
The high value that men put on pride assures them that they are more than adequate to accurately appraise the value of Jesus. But all men are wrong. The error is shown when they walk by a homeless man. What other reason would there be not to invest the humility and time necessary? Mundane life causes a man to devalue the currency of faith and the commands in the Word of God.
Men use “common sense” in their appraisals but God works in uncommon ways of humility and brokenness (Is.55:8ff). So only the uncommon man discerns the accurate value of God’s things (1 Cor.2:11f).
Surely the disciples did not consciously offend Jesus. They did not realize what they were saying. But the thing about Jesus is that He has total security in knowing that the Father has placed within us everything necessary to accurately discern His Spirit. We are accountable for our choices.
Presumption is poison. It permeates the entire being with stress, anxiety and strife. Humility is the only defense. Instead of thinking “Nothing escapes ME. I’m already a disciple of Jesus”, we should think, “I know nothing. At every turn I fear my own selfishness”. God does not defer to our thinking. Paul says “Do not conform to this world but be transformed by the will of God” (Rm.12:2).
Jesus esteemed two pennies as of more value than “all the other contributors to the treasury” (Mk.12:42). That little ‘no nothing’ woman, that poured the perfume on Jesus’ head, did such a supreme act of worship before God, that Jesus gave her more honor than anyone could imagine. She did not scale some spiritual mountain or preach to a gigantic crowd of heathens. She simply happened by the place where, she beheld a common man, saying uncommon things, Whom she discerned to be worthy of everything she had.
Our knowledge of God is NEVER exclusive. We have nothing to brag about as if it substantiates our standing with Him. He can snap it away in a heaven’s breath. Unless we treat His gift as everything, we are in danger of losing it all.
The carnal nature of the disciples kept them from treating Jesus appropriately. The crowds insisted that Jesus was no different than they were (Matt.13:55). You can see it everywhere today. Men deem that Jesus deserves no higher respect or consideration than a football game, a soccer game, a big time event, or anything else in this world. A job is more important. A broken door is more important. A shoestring is more important.
Men are lulled into the delusion that all moments in life are the same. Where is a living God? Common is the norm. There is nothing new. Nothing special, unless so determined by the world. What was yesterday will be today. Thus, they miss the Son of God in His glorious Presence Who is right in front of them. He is sitting, waiting, hoping for that special recognition of “perfume”.
Various Christians were furious at Paul because his walk in Christ shamed their carnal life style. Being in his presence compelled those around to stand fast and take heed. Paul expressed a sensitivity to the constant activity of the Holy Spirit. God isn’t boring. He doesn’t hem and haw and waste precious moments of life. His eternal love reaches out all day long with His profound provisions to save men from this miserable world.
Jesus says the way we treat His brothers is the way we treat Him. So you prove your appraisal of Him by how you treat His brothers. Instead of recognizing Jesus in Paul many devalued his life (Phil. 1:15). They treated him in a very ordinary manner because this is how they saw themselves. “Why should we revere him? He’s no different than us”.
Anyone who claims to speak things, that demand more for Jesus than common ordinary attention, becomes a threat to those who walk in lazy pride. God warns “Wrath is fierce and anger is a flood, but who can stand before jealousy” (Pr.27:4). Jealousy drives away the very thing a man claims to desire. If a man truly wants the Spirit then he is willing to pay the same price of humility and the brokenness of the cross.
The only thing that transforms a common perspective into the reality of His glory is the individual choice to ignite a fire of faith in the living Jesus. A “Ho hum” perspective on life will result in missing God. Jesus expects a believer to honor Him as God if we claim to be His disciple.
It is no wonder Paul severely warned that “the love of money is a root of all sorts of evil, and some by longing for it have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs” (1 Tim. 6:10). It pacifies a man with a false security in this world.
Worldly comfort neutralizes a need for faith, and thus eliminates a real participation in the gospel. A beggar must beg to live. A child of God lives desperate before the cross. I have watched men squander ideal opportunity to participate in moments of eternal destiny in serving God’s kingdom because they are held in the grip of monetary comfort. Of course, they will never admit it.
The glory of God in all creation beckons us to awaken our spiritual senses to His voice. It is not a waste to get alone, to be still, to spend quality time before God on your knees. On your face… that you might see His.
These are evil days my friend. My family and I rejoice in our nothingness because His Spirit bears witness to unfailing love. Our suffering and obscurity reflect the living Messiah. His Presence is only seen by those lowly folks who have the inner constitution to pour very expensive perfume upon the head of the Lamb of God.
We stand and proclaim the Lord Jesus Christ is worthy of every nickel and dime, of every day and month, of every ache and pain, of every effort and breath. The truth is that we are living what we preach. So we are seeing Whom we preach.
One day of seeing is worth far more than 30 days of hearing.
Hallelujah! Maranatha! Come Lord Jesus!
We have seen God use us for a profound impact to hundreds of people in many kinds of venues; including college campuses, city streets, prisoners both men and women and youth centers. The response to the gospel has been “desire realized”. So many open hearts hidden behind the “bad dude” or together image. We are full of awe and praise to Jesus. Every day we continue to receive signicant letters, emails and phone calls from those we have touched.
I would ask anyone who realistically does not see themselves doing such things to consider helping us who have worked very hard to put ourselves in this situation to help them. Which has not been easy, but extremely difficult and time consuming.
It is no easy thing to attain the logistics, administration authorizations, transportation and security clearances that are required to navigate at this level of ministry. It is easy to imagine yourself doing such things but it is quite another thing to accomplish all that is required. You can do so immediately by helping us. We are somewhere on the road, in this country, at this precise moment dealing with many needs to minister at numerous venues. Even a small amount would be extremely helpful.
If you not in a position to be able to help us, we ask you to please pray for us. And not just us, but for the men and women that we minister to as well. Prayer has a tremendous effect. Makes all the difference.