One Thing You Can Do Today To Make God Happy with You2
6 “Leave her alone,” said Jesus. “Why are you bothering her? She has done a beautiful thing to me. 7 The poor you will always have with you, and you can help them any time you want. But you will not always have me. 8 She did what she could. She poured perfume on my body beforehand to prepare for my burial.9 Truly I tell you, wherever the gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her.”
After some folks at the dinner party object to the extravagance of the anointing, Jesus steps in and quiets the cynics and the grumbling.
He celebrates her action, calling it “a beautiful thing.” And he speaks another great line that’s resonated with one of my mentors for the past few months--he’s been trying to help me to slow down enough to appreciate the generosity of it: “she did what she could.”
Read that a couple of times: “She did what she could. She did what she could. She did what she could.” Isn’t it wonderful that Jesus doesn’t expect us to do what we can’t? Isn’t it wonderful that Jesus simply invites us to do what we can?
Some of us are eager, earnest, strivers. We often feel very deeply the ways that we fail and wonder if God is perpetually shaking his head at us as we fall short over and over again. Our mistakes feel very pronounced and our efforts at doing good always feel paltry and pitiful. For the most part, we forget the good we do quickly and easily.
This passage is good news for you. Jesus delights in what you can do, not what you can’t do. In Jesus, you do not serve a Lord and King who is impossible to please. He delights in you doing what you can do. He sees your efforts and rejoices in them. Blessings on you in abundance for your faithful actions.
Others of us aren’t particularly engaged in our faith in a deliberate or intentional way. Sometimes that’s because we’re just not that interested in faith. Sometimes it’s because we’re overwhelmed at how far we know we fall short of anything that would look like something God would be pleased with.
Good news: you can go to work, serving Jesus who delights in you doing whatever it is you can do.
Today I want to invite you to rest in Jesus’s affirmation of this woman’s sacrifice. She has done what she can do and it is enough for him to rejoice in it and declare her forever to be celebrated on account of it. Two thousand years later, here we are talking about her.
You want one thing you can do that might make God happy with you? Do what you can today.
How might knowing that Jesus delights in you doing what you can free you to go do something beautiful for him today?