Whever The Gospel Is Preached…

 I am reminded of the woman who came and poured oil on Jesus’ head a few days before He died.  Oh, how she was scorned for such an act.  After all, she had just poured out a years worth of wages that could have been sold and given to the poor, said Jesus’ disciples.  And yet Jesus responded, “Assuredly, I say to you, wherever this gospel is preached in the whole world, what this woman has done will also be told as a memorial to her” (Matthew 26:13).

Jesus didn’t scorn the woman for such a seemingly foolish act.  Rather, He considered it to be extravagant and He was honored.  He knew that this woman had poured out everything that she had simply because she had listened to Jesus.  She knew that He was about to be killed and so she anointed Him with oil for His burial.  Can you imagine Jesus on the cross, in the darkest moment of His life?  I wonder if He could still smell the fragance of the oil that this woman poured onto Him?

It’s backwards, really, the way in which we view love and the way in which Jesus views it.  We say, “Let me just get it all together and then I will do something with my life.”  Jesus says, “Just love me”.  We say, “OK, well I will do great things for you, Jesus”.  And Jesus says, “Just love me”.  His examples of extravagance seem foolish to me and yet I so clearly have gotten it wrong.

It reminds me of the chorus of one of my favorite worship songs: 

Then I hear You sing to me,
You sing “You don’t have to do a thing,
Just simply be with me and let those things go,
‘Cause they can wait another minute.
Wait, this moment is too sweet,
Could you please stay here with me and love on me a little longer,
Cause I’d like to be with you a little longer,
I’d love to be with you a little longer, because I’m in love with you.”

Lord, thank you that you love us just because.  Thank you that we do not have to have it all together.  Thank you that our seemingly foolish attempts of love honor you.  Teach us how to love you, Jesus, so that at the end of our lives, we will meet you face to face and you will say, “Thank you for loving me well”.  Your love, truly, is better than life.