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True Devotion

“Then Mary took an extraordinary amount, almost three-quarters of a pound, of very expensive perfume made of pure nard. She anointed Jesus’ feet with it, then wiped his feet dry with her hair. The house was filled with the aroma of the perfume.  Judas Iscariot, one of his disciples (the one who was about to betray him), complained, “This perfume was worth a year’s wages!  Why wasn’t it sold and the money given to the poor?” (He said this not because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief. He carried the money bag and would take what was in it.)”1

Mary is a beautiful example of someone who’s love and respect for Jesus was bigger than the opinion of others. In the verses above, we see how she anoints Jesus’ feet with an extravagantly costly perfume, which she then proceeds to wipe with her hair. At that moment the house was filled with the pleasant aroma of her act of love.

On the contrary, we see Judas who was one of Jesus’ disciples. He had been chosen and had the privilege of serving alongside Jesus on a personal level, yet his heart was far from Him. When Judas sees Mary anointing Jesus’ feet with this expensive perfume, he can’t help but think of the waste of money! He tries to defend his negative response by trying to bring the attention to the poor and how the money could have been used in their aid. However, we clearly read that he didn’t truly care for the poor, but rather sought his own benefit any chance he got.

We see such a drastic difference in the attitude and condition of the hearts of these two individuals. It is a great reminder for us to examine our own hearts and motives when serving Jesus. Are our actions and love for the Lord only superficial? Or are we in a true place of devotion, serving our God humbly while serving others? Are we committed to following Christ and serving Him regardless of the cost? Or, like Judas, are we selfishly holding back and limiting our God-given potential?

May our lives be so devoted to and immersed in Christ that we are that perfume that will attract others to know Christ personally and may we always reflect the beauty of our Savior in all we say and do.

Suggested prayer: “Dear God, may I, like Mary, sit at your feet and worship you with all that I have. Allow my heart to be sincere and genuine in my service to you. May the fragrance of my heart and the way I live lead others to you today. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. In Jesus’ name, amen.”

1.      John 12:3-6 (CEB).


All articles on this website are written by
Richard (Dick) Innes unless otherwise stated.