Session 12

What motivates someone to give Jesus everything?

From The Overflowing Life: A 14-Day Devotional

Mary didn’t light up the room with a candle or sing a beautiful song. She broke open a container of perfume, and the fragrance filled the room. Have you noticed that smell powerfully connects us to our memory?

This story provokes our biblical memory — incense rising, burnt sacrifices offered, and bread broken. In each instance, God was pleased with the aroma. In each case, the smell signified something wholly given to God in worship.

The overflowing excess of Mary’s gift filled the house with fragrance for all to experience. Perhaps, she could have sparingly daubed or dripped oil on Jesus’ feet and gained onlookers’ approval. But Mary responded to Jesus’ worth in the only reasonable, right way. She poured out everything.

For Judas, Jesus was worth 30 pieces of silver — the equivalent of four months wages, or ironically, the amount paid in restitution for a slave killed by an animal. Mary’s act of worship is a picture of her life — broken and wholly laid out on the altar before a worthy God.

Mary’s gift reminds us that what is given in devotion to Jesus is never wasted. He is worthy! When we pour ourselves before the Lord, God uses us to spread the aroma of the knowledge of Jesus everywhere.

We are the pleasing aroma of Christ in the world. Oh, that we’d be accused of wasting our lives on Jesus!


  • Do you see Jesus as worthy of everything? Why or why not?
  • Is any area of your life not fully surrendered to the Lord? Do you hold anyone or anything as more valuable than God?

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