Reflection 4


READ   Luke 21 &  Mark 14:1-11


Jesus continued his teaching, and continued to upset the religious leaders who "were looking for some sly way to arrest Jesus and kill him - "but not at the feast," they said "or the people might riot.""  So they bided their time, but the tipping point came when a woman honoured Jesus by anointing with very expensive perfume. It may well have been passed down through the family and was being kept for an important occasion, and here she was pouring this pefume over Jesus, as a sign of her love and devotion for him. Some of the onlookers didn't understand and just saw it as a waste of money - that perfume could have been sold and the proceeds used to help the poor! Jesus on the other hand described her actions as beautiful and prophetic - "she has poured perfume on my body to prepare for my burial."  It was all too much for Judas. He went straight to the religious leaders and offered to deliver him into their hands.

Jesus, it seems was a bit like marmite - you either loved him or hated him! We don't see anyone in the gospels who are 'just ok' with him, None who sit on the fence about him. No middle ground. It was one extreme or the other, love or hate! 

In our readings today, we see both reactions. There were those people who were so enthralled by him and his teaching that they flocked to see him and hung on his every word. On the other hand we see the religious leaders who hated him and all he represented, so much they secretly plan to kill him. We see too the woman who loved him so much that she gave her most treasured possession for him and on the other hand we see the man who resented him so much he betrayed him. 

No wonder that the week ended the way it did. Such vast differences of opinion were bound to result in violence.

The question is then, where do you and I fit into this story? Who do you identify with?

I pray that in the end I will be more like the woman than the others. I want to love Jesus so much that I will give him all that I have. I want to be extravagant in my service to him. I want to hear him say "Well done, you have done beautiful things for me. You have done what you could." 

How about you? What do you want to hear Jesus say to you? Take some time to reflect on this and consider where you stand - along with the woman or with the opposition?