Pray the Word: Pouring Ourselves Out
Read Matthew 26
Matthew 26:6, 7. "Now when Jesus was at Bethany in the house of Simon the Leper, a woman came up to Him with an alabaster flask, a very expensive ointment, and she poured it on his head as He reclined at the table." Just imagine that scene, all these people gathered together at Simon's house and all of a sudden, their attention is drawn to this woman. Matthew leaves her unnamed, almost uniquely enabling us to imagine ourselves in her shoes. Unlike the disciples around Jesus, she realizes Jesus is about to die. She's holding this alabaster flask of very expensive perfume in her hands, worth about a years wages. You can imagine ... It's hard to imagine, like a 50, or $100,000.00 flask of perfume, and she takes it and trembling, she treads slowly towards Jesus.
She stops by His side. I can just picture Him looking up at her, and in this moment it was sure to shock that entire room. She removes the lid from the flask and starts pouring the perfume over His head. You can almost smell the fragrance as it fills the air. At the same time, feel the awkward tension that accompanies it. As these drops of expensive oil just cascade down Jesus' face. The disciples actually say, "This is a waste," but Jesus says, "This is no waste, this is beauty." He says later, "This woman has done a beautiful thing to me." I just think what makes this so beautiful? I think there's different things that mark it.
This woman's offering, it was sacrificial, it was costly, it was selfless, it's like she doesn't even care what this may mean for her, or what others may say about her, how others may respond to her. It's sacrificial, it's selfless and it's satisfying. Obviously she believes Jesus is worth this kind of offering. You put all that together, and I'm just provoked to pray for my own life, for your life. God help us to pour out our lives as an offering before You like this. Help us to sacrifice, help us to know that love for You is costly, that we can't hold on to all the things of this world, and live and love for You.
Help us then to let go of the things of this world. Even things that seem so valuable in this world that are nowhere near as value as You are. Lord, help us to make sacrifices in our lives. I don't know all that, that means for my life and certainly not others lives, but God help us. Help me to hold loosely to even the most valuable things in this world, to cling tightly to Jesus, and to be selfless. God help us not to be so concerned with what others think about us. When we think about our lives, God help us to be so focused on You that we're thinking about ourselves little, if at all.
We just want to live in devotion to You, in selfless devotion to You. That we trust we'll be satisfied and You are worth it. Oh God, You are so good, You are so great, You are so glorious, You are so satisfying and there is no one, nothing in this world that compares to You. Today I lay my life before You, we lay our lives before You today. God, be pleased with the offering of our lives and worship to You today. God, be honored in the offering of our lives and worship to You today. We love You just like Matthew 22, we want to love You with all our soul, all our mind, so help us to love You in a beautiful way like this woman. God, may it be said of our lives that a sacrifice, selfless devotion of our lives is a beautiful thing before You. In Jesus name we pray. Amen.
The Pray the Word podcast is used with permission from Radical. For more from Pray the Word, visit radical.net. http://radical.net/articles/podcast_type/pray-the-word