As I was going over the readings for today, the story of the woman with the alabaster jar seemed out of place as part of the passion story. But as I reflected on it, I realized that there was indeed a message here. The woman is caring for Jesus, now. The Gospel Writer is pointing out, it's not what we could have done, rather, it is our actions in the present moment that are important.
The disciples had Jesus-God Incarnate with them. We have the poor and oppressed, whom Jesus said will always be with us. Jesus told us that, he too, would always be with us. Unlike the disciples, we don't have Jesus with us in the flesh—yet—Jesus suffers with all who suffer.
This Lent some of us participated in a Lenten Program called, “Creation Covenant.” The program introduced us to the term the “anthropocene age,” which is used to describe the current geological age, where human activities are impacting the global climate and ecosystems—for the most part, negatively. The Creation Covenant series looked at how human choices and human greed are causing species extinctions, poisoning of the earth, her inhabitants and atmosphere. We saw that as a species, we are saying, “Let them be crucified!”
We saw how through human actions and inaction, we participate in this crucifixion of Christ in creation. Unfortunately, we are caught up in a system from which it is almost impossible to extricate ourselves. We can, however, become responsible neighbours. We can learn about the company policies of products with regard to human rights, social justice and, environmental sustainability. We can use our purchasing power to demand environmentally safe and human rights violation free products.
The woman with the alabaster jar is a role model. She points us to how mindful actions can serve as ointment for the current suffering of Jesus, embodied in the suffering of creation. We can heed Jesus' admonition to the disciples, that it is the actions of present moment that are important. Our current and future action that matters, if we are to avoid the crucifixion of God's creation.
As we look forward Easter, let us commit to act in ways that help heal the wounds of the earth. Perhaps in this way, we can usher out the anthropocene age and usher in the earth's Age of Easter.
Please share your thoughts.