Something About Mary
Blog – 9-15-16
Wow, have I opened up a can of worms! I wrote last week about the beautiful painting I saw at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Akron and how it depicted Mary Magdalene clinging to the cross. I said I would delve into Mary further this week, and it’s been an interesting journey, to say the least!
First of all, let’s start with what we do know about Mary. She was from Magdala, and she was an early follower of Jesus. We don’t know for sure what her occupation was, but she was apparently wealthy because she helped take care of Jesus and the disciples. Jesus drove seven demons out of her according to Luke 8:2, but there’s really no credible evidence that she was a prostitute, as has been suggested in the past. Let’s just say Mary had issues when she met Jesus!
So what is God trying to teach me? Why did this picture pique my interest so much? Why am I suddenly so interested in Mary?
I guess it’s because, No. 1, she’s a woman and I’m a woman, so I’m interested. There were no women included in the 12 disciples, yet Mary was the first person who learned about Jesus’ resurrection, and she’s the first person Jesus appeared to. Why is that? What an incredible honor God bestowed on Mary to be the very first witness of the resurrection. Why not one of the 12? And why don’t we know more about her?
Another interesting fact is when Mary is named along with other women in eight different passages in the bible, she is always listed first.
There’s something about this Mary!
What I’m struck with and the thing that keeps hitting me in the face is her faith and her undying allegiance to the man who healed her, Jesus, the one who delivered her from her own personal hell. When the other disciples, except for John, were running away as fast as they could, Mary was there at the cross, watching her beloved Savior suffer a painful, agonizing death. When the 12 didn’t know what to do, she went to the tomb to attempt to give Jesus the burial he deserved. Her obedience was unwavering.
Mary seemed to live out these words in Ephesians 3:19:
“May you experience the love of Christ, though it is so great you will never fully understand it.
Then you will be filled with the fullness of life and power that comes from God.”
Mary wasn’t a scholar, but her childlike love and devotion is just plain inspiring. She definitely seemed filled with the fullness of God, and maybe that’s what draws me to learn more about her. Maybe it’s the fullness of God, a passion that is palpable, that intrigues me.
Every little glimpse we are given of her in the Bible is a glimpse of her living out her appreciation for the freedom Christ had given her.
The thing is, we have all been given that same freedom!
We have all been given freedom from our mistakes, our failures, our lapses in judgment, our outright rebelliousness…our demons.
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Mary owed a great deal, gave a great deal, loved a great deal and served a great deal.
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Can we say the same?
Are we loving and serving Christ to the best of our abilities, with everything we have, like Mary?
Ask your heart those hard questions, struggle with the answers like I am, and realize that there really is something about Mary!
Hugs and love,