"Now when Jesus was at Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, 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 table. And when the disciples saw it, they were indignant, saying,
'Why this waste? For this could have been sold for a large sum and given to the poor.'
But Jesus, aware of this, said to them, 'Why do you trouble the woman? For she has done a beautiful thing to me. For you always have the poor with you, but you will not always have me. In pouring this ointment on my body, she has done it to prepare me for burial. Truly, I say to you, wherever this gospel is proclaimed in the whole world, what she has done will also be told in memory of her.' " - Matthew 26:6-13 ESV
This passage has been on my heart today.
This woman couldn't change the circumstances surrounding Jesus' death. There was a momentum in motion that was beyond her control.
What did that alabaster box (flask) of ointment represent to her. Perhaps it was her hope for the future. The disciples knew the cost of such a gesture. What had she done to get something that expensive. Was it given to her? Did she save and barter and trade over years and years to amass what was needed to have that flask. Was it her retirement fund? Who knows.
God knew. Jesus saw what she did and it was beautiful. Her hopes were going into the grave with Him.
She couldn't stop or slow down the events around her but she could send her hopes with Him into the grave. She could bless Him by pouring out her expectations on Him.
Was it a waste? Good question. We are going to be faced with questions like this as we walk through life. Will we surrender our well thought out plan of self preservation?
That woman poured her oil on Christ's head and He died ready for burial. Then days later he rose from the grave but she never got her oil back. She got something much much more important and lasting.
How good it is to live that way. Others may see it and think, 'What a waste.' but God knows better.