Now while Jesus was at Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, a woman came to him with an alabaster jar of very costly ointment, and she poured it on his head as he sat at the table. But when the disciples saw it, they were angry and said, “Why this waste? For this ointment could have been sold for a large sum, and the money given to the poor.” But Jesus, aware of this, said to them, “Why do you trouble the woman? She has performed a good service for me. For you always have the poor with you, but you will not always have me. By pouring this ointment on my body she has prepared me for burial. Truly I tell you, wherever this good news is proclaimed in the whole world, what she has done will be told in remembrance of her.”
Matthew 26:6-13 NRSV
It often seems as we read the accounts in the New Testament, that the disciples just didn’t want to believe that they would soon lose their earthly leader for the next phase of his work. Jesus keeps having to remind them that he is not long for this world. Here they get so wrapped up in their earthly mission that they fail to see what the woman with the alabaster Jar saw. Preparing Jesus for burial is yet again an understanding of the important and painful work that must yet be done. We often go through life missing opportunities to see God moving in and around us. Opportunities to bless others or to be a key part of healing. In this passage of scripture, the woman with the alabaster jar was paying attention. To borrow from current colloquialisms, she understood the assignment. Today, as you reflect on Jesus’ preparations for his important and painful work, how are you staying in tune with the move of God? When we pray, fast, read scripture, and are in a positional to listen to the voice of God, we are less likely to miss the Godly inspiration and moves that are right in front of our face.