Sunday, September 4, 2011
Pitching a Fit, Part Three
Imagine this: we're having a nice dinner with friends, just sitting around nibbling what's left in serving dishes, not really hungry any more, but enjoying each other's company. Then, out of nowhere, some woman comes in and pours perfume over our buddy's feet. In an instant, the whole house smells like Chanel...Good grief! What in the world does she think she's doing?
"Don't sweat it", our friend says. "She is showing her love for me."
We pitch a fit. "That's ridiculous. She's wasting the perfume. It's a useless gesture. Get her out of here...she's a freak."
And we'd be right. No constructive result comes from the spilled perfume. It is simply a gesture of love, accomplishing nothing more. In a results-oriented world, she has wasted both her time and her resources. I can operate with that same attitude in Your world too. In a result-oriented spiritual world, I can follow Your commands with military precision, then lean back, satisfied that I have pleased You.
You, however, see it differently. You tell me to pour out love lavishly, without measurement, without reserve.
A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.--John 13:34
Greater love has no man than this: that he lay down his life for his friends.--John 15:13
Cast your bread upon the waters....Ecclesiastes 11:1
Until now, I have pitched a fit at the concept of my own sin, at Your rules, and at Your command to exceed even those rules. It's hard to see sometimes that in essence, I have pitched a fit because, more than anything else, You want me to be like You. When the woman poured expensive perfume on Your feet, You promised that her gesture of love would be remembered forever and it has. We have remembered it because it showed, in human terms, a picture of Your own heart of love.
To love, I have to waste my life, remembering that You impose rules, then tell me to exceed them. I am never going to want to do this. Loving with abandon, without regard for the attitude of the person loved, hurts. I do not get to pour into a cup, measuring in safety. I must pour where You indicate for Your sake alone and without regard for results. I will have to pitch a fit at the apparent waste, but then do it anyway.
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are my ways your ways.--Isaiah 55:8
Thought for today: What is God challenging you to do that seems pointless?