As we begin Holy Week, we'll be reading the prophesies of the Suffering Servant, or the Servant of the Lord, from Isaiah. We see Jesus so clearly portrayed in all these prophesies.
Today's Gospel reading is from John 12. Jesus is visiting the home of Lazarus, Martha and Mary. Mary takes expensive perfumed oil and anoints the feet of Jesus and dries them with her hair. Judas protests, "Why was this oil not sold for three hundred days' wages and given to the poor?" It may seem a valid question, but Jesus sets him straight.
Mary wanted to give Jesus the very best. As should we. How often do we give Jesus crumbs or leftovers? We save the best for ourselves, thinking we deserve it for all our labors. Others will emulate Judas, questioning why churches have beautiful and valuable artwork and tabernacles. "Why doesn't the Church sell all that and give to the poor?" (Remember who asked that question first!) We should always give Jesus our best - the first fruits - and not the scraps from our table.
Father, may we always give Jesus our best, taking the example of Mary. Help us to be generous, and forgive us for our stinginess. Amen.