Night after night I would find myself up until 2 or 3 in the morning as I would pour over this site either designing it or learning the ropes in order to utilize it. My eyes would burn from staring at this screen for so many hours. I would become frustrated and I would wake up the next morning exhausted only to do it all over again.
Let me be completely honest with you as I share my thoughts on this recent process.
“Why am I bothering to do this?”
“Why am I spending so much time and effort to work on this blog site?”
“Does anyone read it?”
I knew all the answers to those questions but what I was really saying to myself was this:
Is this on-line, writing ministry worth my time, sacrifice and (recent headache as I have moved my blog over to WordPress?)
After all, I can not see who I minister to. Let that thought sink in. There are no hugs to give. No dinners to serve. No one to laugh or cry with. No facial expressions to gauge and no words to hear (unless of course you have left me a comment.) It certainly feels like a one-sided relationship, yet, God calls it ministry.
However, it leaves me wondering…Is there anyone out there in cyberspace land taking in anything that is written here? If there is, is anyone encouraged by what I write when I spend hours doing so? Is anyone closer to the Lord or have a stronger faith because of what I have shared? I believe I know those answers as well. (smile) Thanks friends for your sweet comments!
But the wicked enemy was wanting to tear me down and through all those discouraging and self-centered thoughts, God spoke to my heart yet again.
Daughter, are you willing to pour your life out for Me? Yes, Lord, was my reply.
Then write for Me.Pour out your life like the very costly fragrant oil in The Alabaster Jar that you have found in the Scriptures.
So here I sit, typing, and convicted yet again!
Below I have shared a passage of Scripture from several of the Gospels referring to an immoral woman and her Alabaster Jar. Join me as we dig deeper and learn what Jesus has to say to us and our own Alabaster Jars.
When a certain immoral woman from that city heard he was eating there, she brought a beautiful alabaster jar filled with expensive perfume. Luke 7:37
A woman came to Him having an alabaster jar of very costly fragrant oil, and she poured it on His head as He sat at the table. But when His disciples saw it, they were indignant, saying, “Why this waste? “For this fragrant oil might have been sold for much and given to the poor.” But when Jesus was aware of it, He said to them, “Why do you trouble the woman? For she has done a good work for Me. Matthew 26:7, 10
“I tell you, her sins—and they are many—have been forgiven, so she has shown me much love. But a person who is forgiven little shows only little love.” Luke 7:47
A few things to notice about this passage…
She was an immoral woman.
What she had was costly.
She poured it out on Christ.
She was criticized for doing it. (By the disciples I might add!)
She had many sins and yet Christ had forgiven her.
She showed the Lord much love as a result of her forgiveness.
(There is more to her story, and I encourage you to open the Scriptures and read more about this precious woman when you have the time because I am sure it will make an impact on your life like it has on mine.)
So I ask you today, what is your Alabaster Jar? What is it that is very costly to you? And are you willing to give it up for Christ knowing that you have done a good work for Him?
All of the above?
Here are some examples.
What if you served your husband, submitted to him and respected him even when he didn’t deserve it nor appreciated it (and you did it with a loving heart)? Would you still pour your life out for Christ?
What if you served your children day in and day out yet you never heard a thank you from them? Would you still pour your life out for Christ?
What if you cleaned your house from top to bottom only to have it messed up again within minutes? Would you still pour your life out for Christ?
What if you ministered in Jesus’ name only to have people criticize and condemn you for it? (Hmmm, kind of like the disciples in the above passage.)Would you still pour your life out for Christ?
What if God called you into an area of ministry that you felt outside your comfort zone? Would you still pour your life out for Christ?
Or perhaps God has called you to minister to someone you will never see and you will never experience the fruits of your labor? (smile) Would you still pour your life out for Christ?
Tough ideas. Aren’t they?
Here is what I found to be so miraculous about this ‘poured out’ concept.
As I have poured out my life for Christ, He in turn, has poured Himself into me.
I can honestly tell you that all the hours that I have poured out into this computer, for the sake of lifting Christ up for all to see, has been worth it. Jesus, my precious Savior, is worthy to receive every ounce of costly, fragrant oil that is in my Alabaster Jar.
Is He worth yours as well?
On a different note: As you can see, the new site of The Alabaster Jar is up and working. Praise the Lord. That is a miracle in itself because I am the one doing all of this stuff. That’s not to say I didn’t have any problems with this, because of course I did! I lost my entire blog over at Blogger (good thing I backed it up) and I lost this one as well, so I had to recreate it all over again. I guess the Lord felt I needed an additional tutorial when it comes to this technical stuff!
This site is still missing some items and features, but I am able to write to you so that is what really matters. So let me tell you what’s going on around here.
First, I know blogging brings a sense of community through all of the comments that a post receives, yet, the comments from my Blogger site for some reason did not transfer over. (That’s okay, because I have hidden all that you have shared in my heart.) However, not having comments does affect which posts are popular and so forth. So in essence, at this time, I can’t list the ‘Popular Posts’ like I did before because according to the computer, there are no popular posts! I also can not keep track of how many people visit this site yet, nor can I keep track of which posts women are drawn to. So I am basically ministering blindly! Any feedback that you give me would be appreciated until I can figure out how to add the statistics to this site! Thanks friend.
Second, I am unable to redirect you from my old site, (www.joleneengle.blogspot.com) to the new site, (www.joleneengle.org). That’s how I lost my blog before so I am not going to try that again! Also, if you are a blogger and have added The Alabaster Jar’s button to your site, can you please replace my old button with the new one? Thanks a million!
Third, if you have subscribed to this site through the Google Friend Connect or you are a Facebook friend of The Alabaster Jar, the Lord has parted the Red Technical Sea and you made it over here!
And last, but not least, if you have subscribed via email or through an RSS feed/reader, I am currently at the mercy of Feedburner waiting for them to transfer you over to my new site. I won’t be holding my breath on that one, nor should you, so you just might want to re-subscribe here!
Thanks for your patience and understanding. I realize that those who come to this site are coming for the Word and not for the design of it. (smile.)
Live a poured out life for the Master,
I am linked up with: http://www.goodmorninggirls.org/