Matthew 26:6-11- “6 Now when Jesus was at Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, 7 a woman came up to him with an alabaster flask of very expensive ointment, and she poured it on his head as he reclined at the table. 8 And when the disciples saw it, they were indignant, saying, “Why this waste? 9 For this could have been sold for a large sum and given to the poor.” 10 But Jesus, aware of this, said to them, “Why do you trouble this woman? For she has done a beautiful thing to me. 11 For you always have the poor with you…”
If your life is anything like mine, you are loaded down every single day with responsibilities. Spouses, children, dinner, laundry, friends, family, church activities, school meets, and the list could very easily go on and on. From the moment our feet hit the floor, we rush through the day just hoping and praying we get everything done.
But, how often do we stop just to talk to Jesus? How many times a day do we give Him our undivided attention?
I’ve been so convicted about this as of late. I find myself buying planners to assist myself with accomplishing all of my goals; Scheduling my days nearly down to the half hour to meet all of the upcoming deadlines. This is when I’ll start the laundry. That is when I’ll empty the dishwasher. On lunch I’ll run by the bank. At 3:00, I’ll check on so and so. At 7:30 I’ll start writing that blog… … … But, when I go back and look over it all, I’m broken and ashamed at how little time I spent giving Christ my FULL attention. There is nothing wrong at all with praying in the car, worshiping while you sweep the kitchen, or listening to a sermon while dinner is on. But, don’t you feel so special and loved when someone stops everything they’re doing, pulls up a chair, and looks you right in the eye as you speak or listen? I know I do. And I know Jesus would sure love that, too.
Looking back at this portion of Scripture, I understand the disciples’ concern. Back in that day, alabaster boxes filled with ointment were said to cost approximately one year’s worth of wages. I’m sure in their frame of mind they were thinking of all the struggling people just on the other side of their walls. Aren’t followers of Christ supposed to help the poor? Most definitely. Shouldn’t we be wise stewards with our money? For sure. Isn’t it expected of us to check on the sick, keep our homes in order, visit the prisoners, and take care of the orphans? Don’t we need to reach out to the community and give it all our best effort? Absolutely. But, we’re also told to simply, “Be still.” (Psalm 46:10) We have to pause and remember Who He is. When we do that, our hearts will yearn for that one-on-one time with Him.
Our help comes from the Lord. (Psalm 121:2) He is the very Source of our strength. (Psalm 28:7) He is our Safety (Proverbs 18:10), our Shield (Psalm 18:2), and our Mediator. (Hebrews 7:25) We will wear ourselves out if we don’t take time to soak in peace of mind and rest that only He can give. (Isaiah 26:3)
We should keep our “hands to the plow.” We should do everything as to the Lord. We’re told to number our days and use our time wisely. (Psalm 90:12 & Ephesians 5:16) Still, we must be careful that we don’t focus so much on ministry that we lose sight of Who we’re ministering for. I probably talk about Christ more than I actually talk to Him, and that’s something I’ve got to change. He longs for our fellowship. He deserves it, and I need it. What you’re doing for others is great! But time with Him… Worshipping Him… Talking with Him… even greater. It’s a beautiful thing.
Prayer: Jesus, thank You for loving me like You do… for wanting time with ME. Thank You for always being there with a listening ear, merciful heart, and outstretched arms. Help it sink down deep in my heart that I need uninterrupted time with You on a daily basis. Without that time to rest, glean strength, and hear Your direction, I’ll wear myself down and out. I love You, Jesus! Forgive me for not spending enough time with You, and help me as I try to do better. In Your name, Amen.