The Alabaster Jar: what we used to be

The story goes like this:

A woman who owes a great debt to Jesus takes her expensive dowry perfume and breaks it, then pours it over his head.

The scent wafts throughout the house. Beautiful, costly, extravagant.

She weeps and wipes his feet with her tears.

Humbling, intimate, kinda embarrassing.

Onlookers don’t get it.

Jesus does. He is the ultimate gift of love, she responds with the next dearest thing she possesses.

Because he has returned life to her.

Because he has redeemed her soul.

We have an impulse to scramble either to embrace or evade the expectations of our “love holiday.”

Perhaps we don’t need to do either.

Perhaps we already possess the most priceless gift of love–a perfume born of sacrifice and redemption.

More satisfying than chocolate, far more enduring than cut blooms.

The cost and burden of love is a Man who pours out the only life he has for us.

I have a theory about all of this–overpriced roses, fancy chocolates, even costly French perfumes are all nice, but the real symbols of love are often more like the tears at his feet–baby wipes, paper towels, mops, and detergent.

Often it is the daily, ordinary sacrifices we make, the humble and invisible things we do without any glory whatsoever, which in the end define love…

in the shadow of his Cross.

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