He is worthy of worship.
I remember when I met Him. When I was hit with the realization of who I was in light of who He was. I was lonely and He was Friend. I was purposeless and He was Worth. I was a skeptic and He was Faith. When I saw Jesus, God in flesh, I surrendered willingly. I saw what He did on my behalf, and I loved Him. I'm pretty sure this was when I began to understand worship. And then I began to dwell on God. I dwelt on His absolute magnificent character and His Sovereignty. I realized that even if He had done nothing at all for me, although He graciously did, He is so worthy of all my adoration. He is worthy simply because of who He is. Only it‘s anything but simple.
I think Mary understood in John 12. I wonder when she fell so in love with Him? So in love that she didn't care what anyone else thought or did. She knew what she had to do. What she needed to do. Worship.
“Then Jesus six days before the Passover came to Bethany, where Lazarus was which had been dead, whom He raised from the dead. There they made Him supper; and Martha served: but Lazarus was one of them that sat at the table with him. Then took Mary a pound of ointment of spikenard, very costly, and anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped His feet with her hair: and the house was filled with odor of the ointment. -John 12:1-3
Mary. This is the second time we’ve seen her positioned at the feet of Jesus. The first time Mary is introduced is at the end of Luke 10, when she sat at Jesus’ feet and received His words. While her sister was busying herself with preparation and cleaning, Mary was still and quiet. She was there to receive, to meditate, to learn. She chose to set aside the time to get to know Jesus on a more personal level. Now here at John 12, we see her coming to Jesus again, but this time is a little different. She knew Him personally now, they were close, and He had just miraculously healed her brother. In her getting to know Him, she grew to love Him. The more she knew Him the more she recognized His holiness. The more she recognized His holiness, the more her own insufficiencies were brought into the Light. So this time when she entered, head bowed low, she knelt and washed His feet with precious oils and the tears of gratitude that ran down her face. This time was different. She was no longer the receiver; this time she gave back to Him. Worship.
As this beautiful emotional scene unfolds, not everyone understood. Some scoffed.
“Then saith one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, which should betray him, Why was not this ointment sold for three hundred pence, and given to the poor?”
Was this act of worship a waste? Was she being irresponsible with her resources? We see Jesus’ response.
“Let her alone… For the poor always ye have with you; but me ye have not always.”
Why was God ok with Mary pouring out her expensive oils on His feet? Why was this lavish gift not a waste in His eyes? God knows what the purpose of life is. HIM. God was there with her; an honor most people will never have this side of Heaven. She recognized that. In that moment she didn't need to go out and serve another to bring glory to God. She didn’t need to leave the presence of Jesus to feed the poor or visit the invalid. She chose in that moment to glorify God personally… face to face. She put herself in a vulnerable position to show God her heart. Not for applause, but because of a heart overflowing with unashamed adoration. Because she saw herself in light of Him.
The purpose of every action is to reflect glory back to Him. Every moment; an opportunity to “pour out oils”. In serving in soup kitchens, in helping our neighbors, in the volunteering in nursery; we worship. In voices raised in song, in reading His Word, in our responses and heartfelt prayer; we worship. In preparing meals, yet another diaper change, and the monotony of paperwork; we worship. Each act is to be an act of praise. Our life; a thank you note for what He has done. He is the axis that our world revolves around. It’s all about Him!
“And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.
Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord.
Husbands, love your wives, and be not bitter against them.
Children, obey your parents in all things: for this is well pleasing unto the Lord.
Fathers, provoke not your children to anger, lest they be discouraged.
Servants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh; not with eye service, as men-pleasers; but in singleness of heart, fearing God:
And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men.”
If you break down this list, it’s nothing extraordinary. In fact, it is ordinary. That’s the beauty of it. Jesus says,
“Wives, serve your husband as I served you.
Husbands, love your wives with the selfless love that I First loved you with.
Children, obey your parents like My children are to obey Me.
Servants, even in injustice serve the way you would serve Me.
Whatever you do, now matter how small, do it for Me.”
The every day. The mundane. The acts done in the quiet of our homes.
Don’t get lost in the act of doing.
Remember what the doing is for.
Nothing is about us.
Everything is about Him.
Lavish your best on Him.
Let His beauty fill your life.
I see myself where I knelt that night I asked Him to forgive my faults and blot out the charges against my name, and He did. I remember my “Mary moment” when I wept at His feet in worship to the One who sits on the Highest throne. And then I thought on His merciful acts; those acts that bring warmness to His Highness. I never want callouses to replace such raw realization of being before Him. Lord, keep me in that place. That is where I want to dwell. Sing over me Your song of Redemption. Remind my heart of brokenness. Remind my soul what rescue feels like. I want to know you more.
Here I am to worship,