Last week I sat in the beautiful Wang Theater, next to a young woman who was perhaps the number one advocate of the group that was performing. On this night I heard the powerful and beautiful voices of a group, “Il Divo,” though when I bought the tickets I thought they were a different group. Imagine my surprise when I checked my I-pod playlist and discovered the “tenors” I loved were in fact not “Il Divo.” The tickets were non-refundable- so of course I went to the performance. (My wonderful husband took me even though the Celtics had a playoff game during this same time.) I had no idea who this group was, but fortunately they were excellent.
As mentioned, I was seated next to a woman who certainly should have been president of the group’s fan club. This young woman had 5,000 picture of “Il Divo” on her phone and knew every detail of their lives. She was seemingly entranced during every song. Her spontaneous interactions to comments from the group members would have made one think she was part of their family. She had studied them…and in her words – was “obsessed” with them. I learned that she had sat in that same seat (front and center) at the concert the previous night. Wow. This was a devoted fan.
She also had in her possession four roses that she hoped to present to each man in the quartet. At one point during the concert, a beautiful young woman sitting near the front put a rose on the stage next to the one “single” singer. So, a little later in the show this young woman made her way toward the stage. She was stopped by an usher and came back to her seat disheartened. She whispered, “I guess I’m not pretty enough or “V.I.P” enough. I felt sad for this young woman. I realized that though “Il Divo” means “divine performer,” there is only one who is divine and won’t disappoint.
I thought about two other women who gave gifts.
While he 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.
 Some of those present were saying indignantly to one another, “Why this waste of perfume?  It could have been sold for more than a year’s wages and the money given to the poor.” And they rebuked her harshly.
 “Leave her alone,” said Jesus. “Why are you bothering her? She has done a beautiful thing to me.  The poor you will always have with you, and you can help them any time you want. But you will not always have me.  She did what she could. She poured perfume on my body beforehand to prepare for my burial.  I tell you the truth, wherever the gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her.”
Jesus sat down opposite the place where the offerings were put and watched the crowd putting their money into the temple treasury. Many rich people threw in large amounts.  But a poor widow came and put in two very small copper coins, worth only a fraction of a penny.
 Calling his disciples to him, Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others.  They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything–all she had to live on.”
I hope I see this woman again. I want her to get to know the true divine one; who thinks she is not only beautiful and valuable – but also “V.I.P.” enough to die for. Jesus values us – and as shown in the scriptures above, notices our devotion and love for him.
Reminded of this I ask myself – am I giving him not just four roses – but my all?
Ask Wyndham if he recognized Il Divo from his Christmas DC I made him? they did the gorgeous rendition of Amazing Grace that was on it (sung amazingly, acommpanied by bagpipes no less), sung in the Coliseum in Rome….. I would have thoroughly enjoyed this evening with you!!!!
Great lesson as well, Jeanie…
This is very familiar territory for someone like me who has been a disciple a long time, yet I continue to need to be reminded of the lessons in these passages.
You quoted my favorite scripture–Mark 14:8a -“She did what she could”. So often when I start to beat myself up for all of the tasks I did not accomplish, I think back to Jesus’ words and remind myself to feel satisfied by looking at all of the tasks I did accomplish. This scripture has been even more meaningful to me now as I struggle with physical challenges. I have to let go of many things I can no longer do and also frequently need to ask for help in doing the things I can no longer keep up with. It has been a humbling time but also very beneficial as I get to spend more time with God.
Thanks again for doing what you could by inspiring me and so many others with this blog.