Daily Gospel Reflection for April 15, 2019


Today’s Gospel: John 12:1-11

“You always have the poor with you, but you do not always have me.” John 12:8

Our family vacations have always been local and frugal. We figure it doesn’t require spending a lot of money to have time together, make memories, and escape the stress and responsibilities of everyday life. Subscribing to this viewpoint, it took a long time for my husband and me to even begin to consider a trip to Disney World.

When we did finally begin to think about it, we were completely shocked by how expensive the day passes were. Multiply that by five, and we were extremely grateful for the vacation fund we’d started three years before. However, this one trip was going to wipe out the whole thing. We kept asking ourselves whether it was worth it or not.

In John, Chapter 12, Jesus is at dinner at Lazarus’ house. His sister Mary anoints Jesus’ feet with a very expensive perfumed oil. Judas challenges Jesus, asking Him why He allows it. They could have sold it for 300 hundred days’ wages and given the money to the poor.

Jesus tells Judas to leave Mary alone. Mary has recognized that the Son of God is before her. She’s humbled herself to elevate Him. He justifies the extravagance, knowing the remembrance of this anointing, and the anointing after His death, will console Mary in her grief when He’s gone.

Likewise, my husband and I wiped out our account and took our kids to Disney. Our justification was that our kids are only little once. We knew the memories made at Disney would be our consolation when our kids grew up, moved out, and left us on our own.


Do I sometimes hold the purse strings too tight and overlook an extravagance that’s justifiable?


God, help me to use Your eyes when I’m discerning whether an extravagance is justifiable or not.

Copyright 2019 Claire McGarry

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About Author

Claire McGarry is the author of the Lenten devotional "With Our Savior," published by Creative Communications for the Family/Bayard, Inc. and All is Blessing: Finding God in the Tensions of Life, to be published by Our Sunday Visitor in the fall of 2021. Her freelance work has appeared in various Chicken Soup for the Soul books, Focus on the Family magazine, Catechist magazine, These Days devotional, and Keys for Kids devotional. The founder of MOSAIC of Faith, a ministry with several different programs for mothers and children, she blogs at Shifting My Perspective.

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