Make It Personal

“I tell you that her many sins are forgiven, so she showed great love.  But the person who is forgiven only a little will love only a little.”  Luke 7:47

     In Luke 7:36-50 we are told the story of a woman, the story of a wretched, sinful woman.  Included in the story is a high and mighty, better than thou, Pharisee, Simon.  While Simon might not have been a horrible sinner, from his elevated position in society he looked down on those who were known as sinful.  We see in the story that he would never consider allowing a sinner such as the woman into his home, especially not as his guest!

     Ah, but somehow, in her determination to be near Jesus, she gets in.  At first she stands behind Him, waiting.  She has with her an expensive alabaster jar of perfume, the type she probably used in her ‘profession’.  She is crying.  She is waiting.  When she sees her opportunity she goes down before Him, her tears of remorse falling onto His feet.  With loving tenderness she wipes them with her hair and then rubs the expensive perfume onto His feet. 

     Simon is insulted at her audacity, Jesus is not.  Simon has given Jesus a feast.  The woman has nothing to give but remorseful tears and perfume; perfume which costs her dearly both financially and physically; perfume which endangers her very soul.

     Jesus does not belittle Simon for his way of hospitality, nor does He condemn Simon for his attitude.  Instead, He teaches Simon and all present.  He teaches about forgiveness and love.  He makes it personal without naming names, knowing Simon will get the point.

     Let us make it personal also.  Let us look into our own hearts this Advent and Christmas to see where our own attitudes need correcting.  Especially let us not judge or look down on someone for how much or what they give.  It may be all they have to give; it may be the one gift He wants.  Instead, let us give to each other the gifts of forgiveness and love, that we may be worthy to receive those same gifts from Him.

     Read the entire Bible story in the Gospel of Luke, Chapter 7, Verses 36-50.  Who or what in the story speaks to your heart?  May God bless all of you this Christmas with His gifts of forgivenss and love!

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