She Did What She Could


Mark 14:1-9English Standard Version (ESV)

The Plot to Kill Jesus

14 It was now two days before the Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread. And the chief priests and the scribes were seeking how to arrest him by stealth and kill him, for they said, “Not during the feast, lest there be an uproar from the people.”

Jesus Anointed at Bethany

And while he was at Bethany in the house of Simon the leper,[a] as he was reclining at table, a woman came with an alabaster flask of ointment of pure nard, very costly, and she broke the flask and poured it over his head. There were some who said to themselves indignantly, “Why was the ointment wasted like that? For this ointment could have been sold for more than three hundred denarii[b] and given to the poor.” And they scolded her. But Jesus said, “Leave her alone. Why do you trouble her? She has done a beautiful thing to me. For you always have the poor with you, and whenever you want, you can do good for them. But you will not always have me. She has done what she could; she has anointed my body beforehand for burial. And truly, I say to you, wherever the gospel is proclaimed in the whole world, what she has done will be told in memory of her.”

I have always loved this scene.  The perfume that was used to annoint Jesus's feet was worth a full years wages and yet this woman poured it out and wiped his feet with it because she knew who He was.  She wanted to give Him her very best and while others criticized and questioned she went ahead and offered her best to the Lord.  She did what she could.

I try to put into perspective how this applies to me in the here and now.  I have five children (the youngest four are ages seven and under) with a sixth on the way and life is SO busy.  I try to balance household duties, errands, and other tasks as well as finding time to read to my kiddos and snuggle them. Sometimes things go by the wayside. The dishes might be piled up on the counter when my husband walks through the door, there may be three baskets of laundry waiting to be put away, or I may have turned off my phone just so I could read a book undisturbed with the kids. At the end of the day when I survey my surroundings sometimes I have a sinking feeling inside of me because I know that there will be even more dishes to do tomorrow and the clothes still did not get put away and I have four messages that need to be returned. I ask the Lord for His strength and wisdom and I am reminded that

  "She did what she could". 

It was more important for the woman to anoint Jesus and show Him her love rather than sell the precious nard and use the money for other things. She was  rebuked by those who were with Jesus for showing love and respect to the King of Kings.

Do you ever feel like this woman? 

You give something priceless (your time) to those you love (your family) and you may be rebuked for it either from others or from yourself. Do you catch yourself saying "well, maybe if I had not read two stories to the kids I could have done the dishes".

 I second guess myself at the end of the day wondering what I could have cut back on in order to have accomplished everything on my list. I need to remember to focus on what the Lord would have me accomplish in any given day rather than what I want to accomplish.

My desire is to focus on that which is precious in front of me.  The children the Lord has blessed my life with are only here with me for a season - the chores can wait, the phone can wait, the urgencies of this life can all be cast aside for what is truly important.  

Satan LOVES to water and nurture the  seeds of doubt in our minds which allows them to grow into an insecurity that can eat away at our peace and joy. I am not going to be a perfect mom, I am going to make mistakes and fail my children and my family but I am doing what I can to the best of my ability. I am investing my time and energy into my family and hopefully in doing so, I am bringing glory to God.

So next time you walk by the sink of stacked pots and pans, or you trip over the army men in the hall, or push the basket of clothes aside so you can go push your toddler on the swing, nurse a baby, brush your teenage daughter's hair while having a heart to heart... remember that what you are doing is important and worth it.

 May the work of our hands and our hearts be a sweet perfume to the Lord just as the nard was to Jesus, a beautiful gift given from a genuine heart of love.

 May the grace and peace of our precious Savior be with you this week as your train up your children according to His will and purposes.