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Mark 14

Show me Jesus, Father, and show others the Jesus in me.

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“While He was in Bethany, reclining at the table in the home of a man known as Simon the Leper, a woman came with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, made of pure nard.  She broke the jar and poured the perfume on His head … Some of those present … rebuked her harshly …”

“Leave her alone, said Jesus, ‘Why are you bothering her?  She has done a beautiful thing to Me … She did what she could.  She poured perfume on My body beforehand to prepare for My burial.  I tell you the truth, wherever the gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her.'” (v 3-9 NIV)

Extravagance! … Going all out for someone you love! … not paying attention to the practical, logical ways; rather, choosing to “break the bottle” of myself, pouring out the best I have … all for the love of You, Jesus!

Could that be what David was getting at in Psalm 103, when he wrote, “Praise the Lord, O my soul; all my inmost being, praise His holy name” (Psalm 103:1 NIV)? …every muscle, every bone, every vessel, capillary, membrane, organ, cell, atom … every bit that makes up who I am in this body, wake up!  Come alive at this moment and praise the Lord!  Glorify the name of Jesus — the Author of my faith and the Savior of my soul.

Help me, Papa, to do whatever I do as an extravagant outpouring of love for you, and You alone.

“Papa, Father, …everything is possible for You.  Please take this cup of suffering away from me.  Yet I want Your will, not mine.”  (v 36 NLT)

“He came back and found them sound asleep.  He said to Peter, ‘Simon, you went to sleep on Me?  Can’t you stick it out with Me a single hour?  Stay alert, be in prayer, so you don’t enter the danger zone without even knowing it.  Don’t be naive.  Part of you is eager, ready for anything in God; but another part is as lazy as an old dog sleeping by the fire.'” (v 37-38 MSG)

Here’s that constant inner struggle between the flesh and the spirit … seen in You, Lord, just before You knew You’d be leaving this earth … and in Your disciples, who weren’t fully aware of what was about to transpire.

Paul describes this inward battle in this way:  “So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me.  For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members” (Romans 7:21-23 NIV).

In the face of this struggle, Father, help me to respond as Your Son did and not as the disciples.  Set my mind, body and spirit on choosing Your ways over my own or any other.  Take my life in Your hands and shape all of me to be just like Jesus.

(v. 43-72)

Talk about “having a bad day”!  But You had known all along that it was coming, lord.  You tried to prepare Your followers for it, but they didn’t understand.

All in one night You were betrayed, arrested, deserted, slandered, miss-tried, accused, condemned, mocked and denied … maybe just a BIT of stress there!  Things shouldn’t have been the way they were, but that’s the way they happened … and in the end, the events did what You said “… the scriptures must be fulfilled” (Mark 14:49 NIV).

Thank You, Jesus, for what You endured for me.  In so many ways, before and at Your death, You demonstrated Your love for me … even before I was born.  Thank You for choosing to call me Your own beloved.  Thank You for loving me and holding me close.  Keep right on shaping my heart and mind to be just like You.  Amen.

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