What’s That Smell?

lavender field
Image by Sonja Rieck from Pixabay

The Lord inhales the fragrance, breathing in the love offered to him. The broken vial of oil was so costly that it brought buckets of criticism targeted at her offering.

They whispered to one another, “Why is she wasting this oil. It’s so costly and could’ve been given to the poor. But there she is, spilling it out.”

“She’s so undone.” “She’s missed the mark on this one.”

Her extravagant worship couldn’t be interrupted because it had the only audience it needed. One man. Jesus.

Were you there the day I met her? asks, The Lord. While you brought me nothing she has given me everything. There were few words. The whispers turned to conviction. The disciples thought they knew what should’ve been done but they didn’t. (Matthew 26:6-13)

This story is in the bible. Written years and years ago and yet still being relevant. We still do it unaware that we are criticizing what we don’t understand.

Hundreds of years upon years go by. A different world and culture but a similar struggle. A calloused, misinterpreting heart gives us a sneak peek of our humanity. God, however, is still the same. 

Flash Forward

I stomped up the snow packed steps to my apartment that afternoon. Determined to make only one trip, I stacked the grocery bags up and down my arm. 

As I feel the blood being cut off in my arms

I’m wondering if anyone else can smell the overpowering curry the neighbor cooks with daily.

I’m certain my nose is scrunched up because, yes, it is that strong. It’s not my favorite spice and I get to smell it all day everyday thanks to my neighbors who love to cook with curry.

I love my neighbors but ugh, that smell.

As I start unloading my groceries I feel The Holy Spirit tugging at my heart reminding me of her offering of love to her family.

Offerings of Love

Our offering to The Lord was completely different because our calls from God were different. Our gifts were different. Both of our offerings may be equally costly but vastly different. 

This was her offering. Given in love as she served her family. It may not have been my flavor but it certainly was her fragrance. 

Pure love. 

An act of worship being poured out as she served her family. Such a fragrant aroma before The Lord.

The reminder of this by The Holy Spirit began to reveal the not-so-beautiful smell of my heart.

As conviction settled into my calloused heart, I whispered” Forgive me Lord.” Reminding me of a scripture that says, whatever you do, do unto The Lord.

Whatever it is, do it for him and unto him. Your act of service is worship to The Lord..

Every time you go to work, change a diaper, cook a meal, sing a song, redundantly perform the same tasks over and over when done unto Him, it’s an act of worship.

Our display of worship may look different but our hearts can be similar. It may be hundreds of years later when the vial of what you offer to God will bring curiosity and criticism. 

But It could cause others to offer Him something with extravagance. Something that means nothing to anyone else but everything to the one who has offered it.

The God of the Heart

God looks at the heart. He knows what it cost you. 

Nothing is lost when offered to him. No trial. No tears. No temptation resisted. No pain. No sacrifice. It is all displayed before him.

Every. Single. Thing. 

When we yield all that we are and all we have and we come to bring him our offering, He is honored. 

He inhales your offering. He receives what you’re giving him. No one has to understand it. It doesn’t have to make sense. 

It doesn’t have to pass through their approval. If it is for Him, it comes to Him.

Lord, forgive me for criticizing when I don’t understand and yet give me the courage to offer to you that which may bring criticism from others. Help me to break the vial of worship in whatever capacity you call me to do it. In your name I pray Jesus, Amen.

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