What's It Worth To You?
Dear Faith Family,
Now when Jesus was at Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, a woman came up to him with an alabaster flask of very expensive ointment, and she poured it on his head as he reclined at table, Matthew 26:6.
As newlyweds, my wife and I enjoyed life in a small town. We would travel to “the city” to pick up groceries, etc. On one trip, I noticed someone selling firewood out of the back of their truck. Seventy-five to a hundred dollars a load?! There’s no way I’m paying that much for a load of firewood!
And then I had an epiphany. I would cut a load of firewood and haul it to “the city” the next time we headed to the grocery store. Yeh, that’s the ticket. It would be awesome! Extra income. And then the rest of my body conversed with my brain. I’m going to find the wood, cut the wood, split the wood, load the wood, drive the wood to town, wait for someone to purchase the wood, drive the wood to their house, and unload the wood? There’s no way I’m selling it for seventy-five to a hundred dollars! They’ll have to pay a lot more for it than that!
So how do we determine the value of something? There are a couple of litmus tests that will prove something’s value. There’s the Mary test and there’s the Judas test.
The Mary test asks what you are willing to sacrifice. What you are willing to sacrifice demonstrates that what you are sacrificing to is worth more to you than what you are sacrificing. Mary was willing to sacrifice a very costly perfume to something of inestimable value. Mary’s test began with her Savior. He was her treasure. And she was willing to sacrifice a year’s wages (the approximate value of her perfume) to her Savior.
The Judas test asks what you can get. What you are aiming to get demonstrates that what you are getting is worth more to you than what you are giving up. Judas was willing to gain a rather handsome purse for something of disposable value. Judas’ test began with thirty pieces of silver. It was his treasure. And he was willing to gain a multi-month salary in exchange for something disposable, namely Jesus.
Are you ready to take the Mary test and the Judas test? What’s Jesus worth to you? What you have sacrificed to Him will give you a hint. What have you given up to Him recently? Your schedule? Your time? Your talents? Your money? Your dreams? “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose.” (Jim Elliot)
One more thought? Have you sacrificed Jesus? To gain what?