The words of Luke 7:36-50 tell one of the most beautiful stories I have ever read.
I can see it now. All these men gathered around the Pharisee's table, enjoying a nice, calm, normal meal. They're probably discussing politics, religion, or maybe something tamer, like the weather. The disciples are relieved Jesus hasn't done anything weird or radical for once.
Out in the city, the atmosphere is a little different. As soon as Mary Magdalene hears the rumor that Jesus is at the Pharisee's house, she knows she has to go. She runs to the place where she hid the alabaster box and books it to where Jesus is.
Standing outside the door, Mary tries to still her beating heart. She knows she has to risk everything to gain it all. Suddenly nothing matters except for Jesus, and she goes after Him with her whole heart.
The room suddenly goes still when Mary walks in. Her reputation as a "sinner" is known far and wide. They see her alabaster box full of perfume, and they know how someone like her got the money for something so expensive. Every man at the table is judging her, looking down on her from the pedestals they've placed tehmselves upon.
Every man, that is, except for Jesus. He turns to face Mary Magdalene, His eyes full of love, but can't bring herself to look at His face. She looks at no one, staring at the Savior's feet, focused on the task at hand. All of a sudden she is bawling her eyes out, her tears splashing onto His feet, washing away the dirt and grime. She wipes Jesus' feet with her hair, kisses them all over, and annoints them with every drop of the sweet smelling perfume.
The Pharisee who had invited Jesus is thinking to hinself, If He were a prophet He would know what kind of woman is touching Him, and if He knew what kind of woman she was, there is no way He'd let her touch Him. Our Lord knew his thoughts, and, not even acknowledging him, turned to Simon, saying, "Do you see this woman? I entered into your house, you gave me no water for my feet, but she has washed my feet with her tears, and wiped them with the hairs of her head. You gave me no kiss, but this woman has not stopped kissing my feet since she came in. You did not annoint my head with oil, but this woman has annointed my feet with ointment. Therefore I say to you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven, for she loved much, but to whom little is forgiven, the same love little." Let me tell you, nothing hurts worse than being humbled/knocked off your pedestal/burned by Jesus. Instead of looking down on Mary, now every person in the room knows that she has something they lack.
It is in this moment that Mary Magdalene finally dares to look up. She locks eyes with Jesus, and she knows she will never, ever look away. She has poured everything of value upon the feet of Jesus - the perfume, her love, her old life, her identity, her whole self. Everything is His.
And He says unto the woman, "Thy sins are forgiven. Thy faith has saved thee; go in peace."