Mary was sitting at the feet of Jesus despite what others thought of her. As a woman in the Jewish tradition, she was supposed to hang out in the background or in the kitchen. She wasn’t supposed to sit out with the guys and listen to this Rabbi. Yet, she chose to prioritize Jesus over social convention and others’ opinions.
The apostle Paul spoke of this very attitude in Galatians 1:10 when he says, Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.
A few days before Jesus’ burial, this same Mary took a bottle of perfume worth a year’s wages and broke it and poured it out on Jesus’ feet. By some estimates, that perfume today would be worth thousands of dollars.
She knew that there would be nay-sayers. But she did it anyway.
She was unreserved in her love for him. She worshiped him. Not a casual, what’s-next-on-the-agenda worship. But an extravagant worship where she didn’t count the cost. It was a reverential worship, an extraordinary worship, perhaps even an irrational worship. She didn’t look at the clock or her wallet or at people around her who were wagging their fingers in judgement.
Instead, she looked at Jesus. She allowed him to fill her vision and eclipse everything else around her.
Heavenly Father, Sometimes, I know that I get all flustered and high-strung because I’m focused on others’ expectation or opinions of me. Help me, instead, to focus on You. To allow You alone to fill my vision and to delight myself in You. I know there is abiding peace in living for an Audience of One. Amen