"Then turning toward the woman [Jesus] said to Simon, 'Do you see this woman? I entered your house. You gave me no water for my feet, but she has wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. You gave me no kiss, but from the time I came in she has not ceased to kiss my feet. You did not anoint my head with oil, but she has anointed my feet with ointment. Therefore I tell you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven—for she loved much. But he who is forgiven little, loves little.'" - Luke 7:44-47
Jesus has been invited by a Pharisee, Simon, to dine at this house. While they are reclined at table, a sinful woman, probably a prostitute, interrupts their meal and begins wetting Jesus' feet with her tears and wiping them with her hair (v. 38). She also kisses his feet and anoints them with very expensive ointment. She probably purchased the ointment with money she received from her prostitution business. The Pharisee, Simon, is completely shocked (v. 39). Jesus tells him a short parable (vv. 41-42), then forgives the woman's sins (v. 48) and tells her to go in peace (v. 50).
I must admit I don't have the faith of this woman. This is an extremely bold act. She enters the Pharisee's house uninvited. She doesn't say anything. She just begins to cry over and anoint Jesus' feet. She does this because she loves Jesus so much. She has made a complete mess of her life, and she knows her only hope for forgiveness and peace is Jesus.
How do we apply this? Perhaps it is this. Out of love for Jesus, we should do be willing to do very awkward things. We shouldn't hold back. We may be misunderstood, that is true, but who cares? I want a greater faith (v. 50), like this woman. I want to love Jesus so much, to be so totally devoted to him, that I welcome Jesus into all aspects of my life. Simon didn't do a great job of welcoming Jesus into his home. This woman, by contrast, went above and beyond for Jesus. I guess that's it. We are to go above and beyond for Jesus out of sheer love for him.
Father, this story in Luke is incredible. The more one evaluates it, the more incredible it is. Please raise up men and women among us who have this kind of love, dedication, and allegiance to the person of Jesus, who are not afraid of awkwardness, who will go to any length to be near him. Jesus, we ask you to minister to us today. Reveal yourself to us through the Scriptures and through our daily experience as we walk with you. In your name, amen.
- Jeff Coleman