“Mary took a liter of costly perfumed oil made from genuine aromatic nard and anointed the feet of Jesus and dried them with her hair; the house was filled with the fragrance of the perfumed oil.” (John 12:3)
On this Monday of Holy Week, we remember Mary’s act of costly love anointing the feet of Jesus with fragrant perfume. I’d like to imagine Martha, her sister, sitting next to her with a towel (so nothing stained the carpet.)
Sometimes I resonate with Martha getting things done, cooking in the kitchen, a make-it-happen person. Other times I aspire to be like Mary sitting at the feet of Jesus, listening to His words, basking in His presence.
Navigating our lives of faith it’s really both and, not either or. Mary made a gesture of costly worship, but consider Martha’s intrinsic role in the household. If Mary blew a whole year’s worth of wages, wouldn’t Martha have a say in it? In a sense this sacrificial act of worship came from both of them, but in different ways.
Just like at times our acts of love can take different forms: changing diapers, cooking, care-giving, giving of ourselves (our presence and presents), reaching out to irascible friends and colleagues, laying down our lives for others, spending time in prayer and adoration…
All we do can be acts of love, costly perfume, if we offer them up to Jesus and do them with the fragrance of His lavish love.
“It is not how much we are doing but how much love is put into doing it.” Mother Teresa
Virginia : )
* Handmade wall figurine from In the Company of Saints (Natchez, MS)