Sunday, April 1, 2012

Palm Sunday

What a waste.
An entire alabaster jar of expensive perfumed oil
broken and poured upon the head
of an obscure rabbi 
from one of the more distant and impoverished districts.
It could have been sold
and the money spent for some practical purpose.
What a waste.
In a few days he would be dead anyway.

What a waste.
Jesus arrived in Jerusalem to the joyous cries of the crowds,
ready to accept him as their king, as David’s heir.
Now could have been the moment
when he leveraged his political capital
and brought change that we could believe in.
What a waste.
He squandered that political capital
by claiming to be more than a king,
by claiming to be the Christ, the son of the Blessed one,
by claiming that God is his Abba, his father.
And now he is publicly tormented in a shameful death.

What a waste.
“Though he was in the form of God,”
the eternal Son, fully sharing in divinity,
“Jesus did not regard equality with God 
something to be grasped.
Rather, he emptied himself,”
pouring himself out like the perfumed oil 
from the woman’s alabaster jar,
“taking the form of a slave, 
coming in human likeness, 
humbling himself. . .
becoming obedient to the point of death, 
even death on a cross.”
What a foolish, senseless waste.

But the foolishness of God is wiser than worldly wisdom.
“The Lord God is my help, therefore I am not disgraced;
I have set my face like flint, 
knowing that I shall not be put to shame.”

Because he willingly poured out his life
for love of God 
and for love of each and every one of us,
“God greatly exalted him,”
raising him up and revealing him 
to be the Lord of creation;
raising him up so that the lives of all those
who have poured themselves out 
in the cause of love,
like precious ointment from an alabaster jar,
might rise also with him,
their lives not wasted
but truly found, truly saved, even unto eternity.

No comments: