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by Roderick Marshall

“..standing behind him at his feet, weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of her head and kissed his feet and anointed them with the ointment. …And he said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.” 
Luke 7:38-50 (ESV)

I was in a queue at a set of traffic lights in town. We were stationary, so I looked expectantly towards the red lights in front of me, when a movement in the car in front of me caught my eye. It turned out to be a woman who had leant across to get up close and personal with her passenger: intimate. I thought; it must be love. You get exhibitions of young parting lovers making public declarations of affection. I can remember being like that once.

Anyway, the lights being still on red, and me being inquisitive, I watched this tableau played out before me. Only I realized the person on whom the woman was so  intent, was not her partner, no, it was her toddler son!

Presumably he was in a booster seat which raised his head up to adult levels. She was inspecting his face, then cleaning it and fussing him, prior to being dropped off at the nursery around the corner.

Well I was not wrong, I thought, it was love! Then the following words drifted into my consciousness: coming-towards-as-if-to-kiss.

Yes, I had been ambushed by God again. Proskyneo, the N.T. Greek word for worship means just that. Yes, I am no Greek lexicon, I had to look it up to find it again. It is not an amorous encounter, but rather one of trust, love, deference, respect and intimacy; like Mary Magdalene’s uninhibited entreaty.

As a Creator, God longs to be close with His children, just as this mother was to her son. The question is will we allow Him to get up close and personal? Close enough so He can clean us up, make us presentable, encourage us, and then send us out!

OK, are we ready to being open to Him in reverence today, even up close?

PRAYER: LORD, You are awesome and terrible, holy and majestic, yet You are also jealous of our worship, obedience and love. So we, with bended knee and humble hearts, say Our LORD come! Visit us once more today, in Jesus name, amen.

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