Friday, September 23, 2005

it's still all about Jesus...

i've been reflecting on matthew 26 as of late. Jesus is in a home and a woman breaks open a jar of expensive perfume to anoint and honor Him. the disciples get a bit ticked off about this, claiming that the perfume could have been sold to help the poor. Jesus replies by saying:

"Why berate her for doing such a good thing to me? You will always have the poor among you, but I will not be here with you much longer. She has poured this perfume on me to prepare my body for burial. I assure you, wherever the Good News is preached throughout the world, this woman's deed will be talked about in her memory."
(Matthew 26.10-13, NLT)

isn't that just like Jesus to keep first things first? as followers of Christ we are to first and always be about honoring Him above all things. was Jesus denying the need for us to assist those in need? absolutely not! i can't imagine that the 2000+ references in scripture regarding our responsibility to the poor would be neglected by Jesus. but, i believe that Jesus wanted them (and us) to remember that there must be a heart turned toward Him always, wherever we engage our time and resources.

did you notice that Jesus just had to mention the preaching of the "Good News" in his admonishment to the disciples? a not so subtle reminder that whatever we do, there is an ultimate goal of telling a lost and dying world about the God who loves them and wants to be in a relationship with them through Jesus Christ.

someone asked me what i thought God might be doing in bringing us hurricane rita so closely on the heels of hurricane katrina. perhaps it's God's way of reminding us today what he reminded the disciples about in matthew 26. there will always be physical needs in the world. everyday there are people who hunger, thirst and are without the basic needs for daily living. God directs us to be sure to meet those needs, care for the poor and needy. but, in the midst of it all, don't forget that, in the end, it's still all about Jesus. the story cannot end without Him.