Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Having The Devotion Of Mary

{Written By Bethany}
It was evening and there was a feast going on in Jesus' honor since He raised Lazarus from the dead, it was six days before the Passover, when Jesus was to be crucified. Martha served the dinner while Lazarus and Jesus reclined and ate. It was dim, and the candles were the only source of light. All the sudden Mary, Martha's sister came and sat by Jesus feet humbly. She knew what she was about to do was unthinkable in her world, but her devotion was so great she did not care. As she gently sat and unbound her hair from the top of her head she realized that even though leaving her hair down in public was a disgrace...but she continued to push the thoughts aside and let her long, silky hair flow to the ground. She bowed her face low towards Jesus feet and without a word took a jar of pure nard, that of which would have costs almost a years wages in our day...much more for her's...and broke it, letting the sweet aroma drip down towards Jesus feet. They may have been dirty and sore from days walking with only sandals to protect from the dirt and heat, but she cared not and continued. She put her nose to the ground and wiped the perfume and His feet with her hair...unconcerned of what others thought...unconcerned of what disgrace might come, or the talk and gossip that would start...unconcerned of what might become of her hair all dirty and soiled...all that mattered was that she would be able to show her love, care and devotion to the Lord in the most biggest possible way. To let Him know that He was her Lord and that she loved Him beyond all else. As she wiped up the dirt and massaged His feet with her hands, she started to cry and with her tears she wiped His feet clean. She cried so much that her tears were sufficient, her love overflowing. "I'm so unworthy, so filthy, so unclean, not worth of such a job, she thought as she cried more and her tears flowed. I'm so unworthy..." this is all she would think of as she humbled herself and washed His feet. By now the smell of the perfume had softly drifted throughout the whole room, house and street. It was a way of showing how strongly she loved her Lord. And the smell would stay with Him for several days to remind Him of her love. As she humbly got up and looked into His loving eyes she knew that not one thing would ever mater anymore besides living for Her Lord.

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One day when my Grandma came over to watch us kids, we dd our devotions with her. That mornings reading was John 12 and when we read it, the words just filled me with an awe and inspiration.

Six days before the Passover, Jesus came to Bethany, where Lazarus lived, whom Jesus had raised from the dead. Here a dinner was given in Jesus’ honor. Martha served, while Lazarus was among those reclining at the table with him. Then Mary took about a pint of pure nard, an expensive perfume; she poured it on Jesus’ feet and wiped his feet with her hair. And the house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume. But one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, who was later to betray him, objected, “Why wasn't this perfume sold and the money given to the poor? It was worth a year’s wages. He did not say this because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief; as keeper of the money bag, he used to help himself to what was put into it. “Leave her alone,” Jesus replied. “It was intended that she should save this perfume for the day of my burial. You will always have the poor among you, but you will not always have me.” 

   As I meditated on the fact that Mary was using her perfume that was normally saved for the bride's wedding day, that of which cost so terribly much, 11 months wages in our currency...and so much more in their's...I was filled with an awe for Mary's love for Jesus. Her humility to do the unthinkable, for only servants washed other's feet...and women NEVER unbound their hair in was a disgrace and the unthinkable..seemed so breathtaking. But seeing how much Mary was focused on only one thing...serving Jesus...she didn't care about anything else, challenged me to think, "Am I like that? Is this my vision?". 

     I have been struggling in my personal devotions as of late. I've had limited accountability and my desire for the Lord has slowly dried up. It's now to the point that since I started to slowly let it slip, thinking "Later..I'll do it later, I've got such and such to do now." that I've slowly lost the desire, and when I consider it I think of how bad this is. I want to have the passion, it just isn't there. But when I read this story, I was filled with longing for the love and desire that Mary had. I want what Mary had. That unmistakable, unfailing, unquenchable, passionate, driving fire desire for the Lord and for His Holy Word. Maybe you too, dear sister, are struggling in this area. Maybe you are feeling like spiritually you are in a desert, with no hope of water to be found for miles and miles. Maybe you are slowly loosing interest in devotions, and the after-faith fire is slowly dying...if there ever was one to start. Well if not, why not start today? Why not fall on your knees and beg God for a passion such as Mary's? I often ask myself, "why put it off? is whatever I'm doing really that important? As if anything can be more important than the Lord?" Maybe you are in my place too. Well I want you to know that you are not alone! We can concur the Devil's lies and find fulfillment in Jesus ever open arms...ready for us all the more now that we are drifting away. He is ready to let you fall in His arms and is ready to embrace you and fill you with an unending peace! Let us not grow weary! 

   Dear sister, I hope that you will not loose the vision. I hope that you will cry out to the Lord with me "Lord, light me, set me ablaze. I don't want to just be a tiny fire, or even worse, a spark, I want to be fully ablaze FOR YOU! Give me a passion for You and Your Word! I can't do it alone...please help me!!!!" Will you join me in strengthening the vision, the passion, the power, only found in Jesus loving arms? Will we live up to the example of utmost devotion, just like Mary? Will be dare to be a Mary in this World? And if so, what if? How would our world be changed? What if?

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