I am a shameless girly girl. I love tea parties, dressing up, romantic love stories, jewelry, cosmetics, and all things beautiful, so naturally one of my favorite stories in the bible is about perfume.
The scene is found in Matthew 26 and set in the town of Bethany, where Jesus was found at the home of Simon, the leper. A “woman came to Jesus having an alabaster flask of very costly fragrant oil, and she poured it on His head as He sat at the table. But when His disciples saw it, they were indignant saying, “Why this waste? For this fragrant oil might have been sold for much and given to the poor.” But when Jesus was aware of it He said to them, “Why do you trouble the woman? For she has done a beautiful thing for me.” (Matthew 26:7-10)
The fragrant oil that this woman lavished on Jesus was worth about the equivalent of one year’s pay, so it isn’t hard to see why the disciples were concerned. They criticized her for being foolish and wasteful and probably questioned her sanity, but all she cared about was pleasing her King. This woman gave undoubtedly her most extravagant, precious treasure to Jesus as a beautiful act of worship to show that He was far more valuable to her than any earthly possession. Little did she know that just a short time in the future, Jesus would be making the ultimate sacrifice for her and all of mankind by pouring out not just expensive oil, but His very blood on the cross.
When we surrender to the Lord that which is most precious to us, it is an act of worship because we are declaring that God is greater than anything this world has to offer. As much as I love my “girly” things, I would give them all up in a minute because they are nothing compared to what Christ has given me. No spa day can spoil you the way that God does. No facial can make you glow the way you do after beholding His face. No dress can compete with the garments of salvation He clothes you in, and no love on earth can ever compare to the overwhelming, abounding love of Christ.
Just as the woman poured her costly gift on Jesus head, when we pour out our lives for Christ and see Him as infinitely more valuable than any of our human possessions, he fills us with His Holy Spirit and covers us with the most heavenly scent-the fragrance of Christ.
I love 2 Corinthians 2:14-15 which says, “Now thanks be to God who always leads us to triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place. For we are a sweet fragrance of Christ unto God.”
One of my dear friends once referenced this verse and gave me an illustration of the fragrance of Christ that will stick with me forever. I called him to ask him to pray for me before a big soap opera callback and he said, “Kalyn, no matter how it goes, the most important thing is that you will bring the fragrance of Christ into that audition room. The casting directors and producers will all know that there is something different and sweet about you and that “fragrance” will linger in the room long after you leave. Everyone who enters the room after you will unknowingly soak in that fragrance, and you will change the atmosphere in that room, affecting more lives than you know.”
Those words about Christ’s fragrance were so powerful for me that day and those same words are true for each one of you who put your trust in Christ. You are filled with His Holy Spirit and therefore you bring His sweet smelling aroma into every room you enter, each hallway you pass through, every elevator you step on and each subway car you ride on. The fragrance of Christ never runs out, has a heavenly, luxurious aroma, and best of all this fragrance is paid for, in full, by the One who loves you and treasures you more than you could ever imagine. Jesus.
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