Just Thinking

Cost of the Oil
9/17/2018 12:00:01 AM by: C.L. Lawrence


- Justin & Sharon have such a great marriage.

- Peggy has a man so she’s fine. If I had a man to help with this-n-that, I’d be fine too.

- Kenny has a lady. I can’t find one that’s right for me.

- Mark is a great golfer. He knows a lot of tricks.

- Rev. Dr. Bishop Awesome has a grand ministry. They must be specially gifted or anointed.  

- Aaron’s business just took off. He’s so lucky.

- Abby just keeps moving up in her career. She has God’s favor.

- Craig gets good breaks because he knows the right people.

- Paul is successful because he was born lucky.

- I can’t seem to find anyone because I’m just who I am, and I don’t play games.

     There’s a beautiful Gospel song, “Alabaster Box” by CeCe Winans, with these poignant lyrics:

You don’t know the cost of the oil

You don’t know the cost of my praise

You don’t know the cost of the oil in my alabaster box.

        The song, of course, was inspired by the story of the woman in the Bible who, from a deep sense of gratitude for the grace and kindness shown to her by Jesus, anointed his feet with expensive oil from her alabaster box. For that she was harshly criticized. Her detractors could only see what she had (high-end oil) and how she was using it. There’s always more to it than what you see. Think of the oil as a metaphor for anything you chose; a loftier career, better job, notoriety, bigger ministry, a spouse, a better relationship, … Then consider this:

  • The price of oil is whatever the price was/is.
  • The price of the oil is the same for anyone who wants it.
  • The merchant (the supplier) doesn’t care who the buyer is or how the they get the $$$ to purchase the oil.
  • Whoever has the $$$ can possess the oil.
  • The possessor could use the oil however they chose.

The price is the $$$ amount, but the cost is what it takes to be able to pay the price.

     Her detractors assessed the value of the oil by the label and price tag (what they saw). They didn’t buy it and perhaps would not have been willing to pay the price. There was no cost to them. Anyone could have bought the oil if they had the money or was willing to do what it took to get the cash. The intrinsic value of the oil was known only to the woman, for only she knew what it cost her to get it. Her detractors didn’t know that, nor did they think that far. Onlookers rarely do. They just see the oil.

     To see through uncorrected vision, and thoughts that swim in shallow water keeps one in the same spot; never moving forward toward getting what they want. What you desire possessed by another came with a cost; a cost to get it and the hidden cost of maintenance, what it takes to keep it. You don’t know the cost of the oil in their alabaster box.

You may be able to pay the price but are you willing to pay the cost,

as well as the hidden cost of maintenance?

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