Welcome to week 2 of our Real Lessons from the Life of Jesus series. If you missed last week’s reading and reflection on The Woman at the Well, be sure to check it out.
This week, we are going to read one of the most powerful exchanges Jesus ever has with a woman. As you read the story of the woman who anointed the feet of Jesus, imagine that you are present. Put yourself in the room as she pours out her tears and offers her costly gift. What do you think was running through her mind? How would you have responded to her?
If I’m completely honest, I think I would have felt awkward observing what happened. It’s so raw and vulnerable. Don’t we all struggle a bit with true vulnerability—the kind that leaves us feeling completely exposed? Often, we don’t feel safe and we wonder how we will be received.
Pay attention to how Jesus responds to this woman’s complete authenticity. It’s why I love Him so.
We are always safe with Jesus.
Linger in this story for awhile. How would you have felt? Would you have responded differently than the people in the room? Soak in the words and reactions of Jesus and let the beauty of His grace and love wash over you once more.
Seeking Him with you,
Week 2: The Woman Who Anointed the Feet of Jesus
As you read this story, remember to use our REAL study method. You can grab a printable version here. Take notes, highlight, re-read and focus on how this woman’s approaches Jesus, and then His response to her. Reflect on your own life. How is Jesus speaking to you?
Read Luke 7:36-50 (The Message)
36-39 One of the Pharisees asked him over for a meal. He went to the Pharisee’s house and sat down at the dinner table. Just then a woman of the village, the town harlot, having learned that Jesus was a guest in the home of the Pharisee, came with a bottle of very expensive perfume and stood at his feet, weeping, raining tears on his feet. Letting down her hair, she dried his feet, kissed them, and anointed them with the perfume. When the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, “If this man was the prophet I thought he was, he would have known what kind of woman this is who is falling all over him.”
40 Jesus said to him, “Simon, I have something to tell you.”
“Oh? Tell me.”
41-42 “Two men were in debt to a banker. One owed five hundred silver pieces, the other fifty. Neither of them could pay up, and so the banker canceled both debts. Which of the two would be more grateful?”
43-47 Simon answered, “I suppose the one who was forgiven the most.”
“That’s right,” said Jesus. Then turning to the woman, but speaking to Simon, he said, “Do you see this woman? I came to your home; you provided no water for my feet, but she rained tears on my feet and dried them with her hair. You gave me no greeting, but from the time I arrived she hasn’t quit kissing my feet. You provided nothing for freshening up, but she has soothed my feet with perfume. Impressive, isn’t it? She was forgiven many, many sins, and so she is very, very grateful. If the forgiveness is minimal, the gratitude is minimal.”
48 Then he spoke to her: “I forgive your sins.”
49 That set the dinner guests talking behind his back: “Who does he think he is, forgiving sins!”
50 He ignored them and said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you. Go in peace.”
LET’S DIG DEEPER:
- What do you learn about the heart of Jesus in this story?
- How do you see Jesus modeling wisdom?
- How do you see Jesus modeling kindness?
- Based on this passage of scripture, what do you see in Jesus that you want to cultivate in your own life?
- How can you live this out in your relationships this week? Be specific.
Pray, asking God for wisdom, strength, and courage as you seek to cultivate the heart of Jesus.
We’ll see you here next week, for more real lessons from the life of Jesus through the story of the woman caught in adultery. Until then, let’s purpose to be women who cultivate the heart of Jesus as we grow spiritually wise and relationally kind.
Cultivate Unity is right around the corner! We’re talking the women and girls (ages 10+) of Sandals Church gathering together at the campus you attend every weekend. One church, one event, multiple locations. Join us at 6pm for activities, NEW Cultivate merchandise for women and girls, plus sweet treats, coffee, and beverages for purchase. Doors open at 6:30pm and the program starts at 7pm with worship and a special message from your campus pastor’s wife! Come and bring a friend, or come and meet some new friends. We promise you won’t want to miss this night. Join us on August 25th! We can’t wait to see you!
Scripture taken from The Message. Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002. Used by permission of NavPress Publishing Group.