“While Jesus was in Bethany, reclining at the table in the home of a man known as Simon the Leper, a woman came with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, made of pure nard. She broke the jar and poured the perfume on His head.” Mark 14:3
Alabaster was a common material in the Near East to use in the making of jars. They were made of gypsum, which when polished, was translucent. It could be easily carved. For the woman to break open this jar was not a big deal. The jar itself was not worth much.
What is important is what was in the jar. We’re told the perfume was made of pure nard. Nard had to be imported from India and was very expensive. Commentators think this one bottle of perfume was worth $30,000 in today’s terms.
Most likely the perfume was part, if not all, of her dowry for when she would marry. This woman was not giving Jesus a small thing. She gave Him the most precious thing she owned.
We all have “alabaster jars” containing things we want to keep. These items could be our time, our talents, our money, etc. which we want to use for our own selfish desires.
We have all these things because God provided them. However, He does not expect us to keep them locked away strictly for our own benefit. He expects us to use what He’s given to expand His kingdom and to share His love and mercy.
What are you keeping stored up in your alabaster jar? Maybe now is the time to break open that jar and bring what’s precious to you to the feet of Jesus. How can you use what He’s given you for His glory?