She has done what she could

And while he was at Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, 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…And some scolded her. But Jesus said, “Leave her alone. Why do you trouble her? She has done a beautiful thing to me. She has done what she could; she has anointed my body beforehand for burial.”—

“I tell you the truth,” Jesus said, “this poor widow… poor as she is, has given everything she has.”—For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what one does not have.—’Yes,’ the king replied, ‘and to those who use well what they are given, even more will be given. But from those who do nothing, even what little they have will be taken away.’

Then the LORD asked him, “What is that in your hand?”
“A shepherd’s staff,” Moses replied.

And he said, “Throw it on the ground.” So he threw it on the ground, and it became a serpent, and Moses ran from it.  But the LORD said to Moses, “Put out your hand and catch it by the tail”–so he put out his hand and caught it, and it became a staff in his hand… Again, the LORD said to him, “Put your hand inside your cloak.” And he put his hand inside his cloak, and when he took it out, behold, his hand was leprous like snow.  Then God said, “Put your hand back inside your cloak.” So he put his hand back inside his cloak, and when he took it out, behold, it was restored like the rest of his flesh.

But Moses pleaded with the LORD, “O Lord, I’m not very good with words. I never have been, and I’m not now, even though you have spoken to me. I get tongue-tied, and my words get tangled.” Then the LORD asked Moses, “Who makes a person’s mouth? Who decides whether people speak or do not speak, hear or do not hear, see or do not see? Is it not I, the LORD? Now go! I will be with you as you speak, and I will instruct you in what to say…and be sure to take your shepherd’s staff along!

…speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love—the parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable—Moreover, it is required of stewards that they be found faithful. …It is the Lord who judges me… [the Lord] will bring to light the things now hidden in darkness and will disclose the purposes of the heart. Then each one will receive his commendation from God—But my life is worth nothing to me unless I use it for finishing the work assigned me by the Lord Jesus–the work of telling others the Good News about the wonderful grace of God.

His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.’

Mk.14:3,5-6, 8 ESV; Lk. 21:3-4 NLT; II Cor.8:12; Lk. 19:26 NLT; Ex. 4:2-4,6-7,10-12,17 NLT; Eph 4:15-16 ESV; I Cor. 12:22 ESV; I Cor. 4:2-5 ESV; Acts 20:24 NLT; Mt. 25:21 ESV

What is a woman to do?  She could not stop the religious leaders from plotting to kill the One she loved.  It wouldn’t be long now. Tensions were mounting.  Nothing she could say would make a difference.  But she could worship still.  She could declare how highly she valued  this One who had come to demonstrate the heart of God for sinful people…So she did a beautiful thing and I imagine the scent of that pure nard accompanied Jesus through the scourging and thorns and mockery.  Did the aroma remind him of the joy set before Him in bringing many sons to glory? Did it remind Him that some had believed? Some had loved…She had done what she could, and it was a  beautiful thing to Jesus.

The poor widow’s mite dropped in the temple treasury wouldn’t pay for much temple maintenance but in God’s sight it came from a heart of gold and was worth recording for all the ages to come.

Moses’ indignation wasn’t sufficient to rescue his people from Egypt, but when God had his attention, a shepherd’s staff and a willing mouth were enough…

What is a woman to do? I cannot single-handedly halt the course of evil in the world, but I can pour out what I have–my time, my talents, my passions, and my very personality–in worship.  What is in your hand?  That is enough when yielded to God’s direction.

Speak, O Lord, and fulfill in us
All Your purposes for Your glory.

–Keith & Kristyn Getty

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Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. Rom.12:21 ESV

2 thoughts on “She has done what she could

  1. Oh, how I love that song.
    And I confess that the phrase “she has done what she could” hooks a certain part of my personality that strives when I should stop. And that’s because I get it backward. (I know, I know)
    Thanks for stringing together sacred words and then adding your wisdom on the P.S.

    • hmm. I didn’t think of it that way, Michele. I come from the angle of generally feeling that there’s nothing I can contribute/do that will make any difference. But I am the offspring of a mom who could do anything! And always saw the possibilities. My personality bears the scars–a constant wrestling with a sense of ‘should’ unaccompanied by a desirable sense of ‘could’… Life could be so much simpler I think, without so much overthinking! Thx for your input!

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