Abundance of love for Jesus.


During Lent, those who love Jesus and are overflowing with gratitude to him, sometimes do some extraordinary things. At least outwardly they may appear eccentric.


In Mark 14 we read that Mary, the sister of Martha and Lazarus, loved the Lord. Jesus had been a real friend to her. He had filled her life with hope and showed her the God of love.
He had been there during some of the most difficult times of her life. Certainly, one was when her brother Lazarus died. But Jesus had come, and her brother Lazarus was miraculously raised from the dead and given back to her.


Mary had tasted of the love of Jesus. He was not like any other man she had ever known. He was a powerful man who had the authority to cause the storms to cease, demons to flee, and the dead to be raised.
Yet, he was gentle, and he had reached out to her. How could she ever thank him?


Now they were having one last meal together. She thought this might be her last chance to do something special for her Lord. She seized the opportunity and took an alabaster jar of extremely costly perfumed oil, broke it, and anointed him with it. This was true extravagance.


Mary's love moved her. Nothing was too precious for her to give to Jesus. And what she gave was worth more than one year's wages. Some complained that she was wasting money that could have been used “better”.


Reacting to the complainers, Jesus gives us the answer for the question: "What is a true good work?" He says in verse 6 that Mary, "has done a beautiful thing to me."

Christian service that is not done because of our love for Jesus is not truly Christian. But service offered, even imperfect service, because we love Jesus and want to truly do his will, will always be beautiful to the Lord and bring him joy.


Notice what else Jesus said, in verse 8, "She has done what she could." Mary did what she could. She did the best she could, because of an abundance of love for Jesus.


Respond to Jesus today by offering yourself as a sacrifice to God. Then offer gifts of as much as you can do in his service. As you do this, you will find that he will not only accept your gifts, but that he will rejoice over them.
And into your life will come the joy that belongs to those who are in his service and in his will, because of love.