By Toni Ford
Six days before the Passover celebration began, Jesus, knowing the Jewish leaders were looking for Him in order to kill Him, took a great risk and went to visit Jesus’ dear friends Mary, Martha and Lazarus. This story takes place in John Chapter 12. I love this story for several reasons. First, we see the importance Jesus placed in spending time with His dear friends before His death and resurrection, even if it meant putting Himself in danger to make that visit. Second, we read about an important dinner that was prepared for Jesus by his friends Martha, Mary and Lazarus and the role each of them played.
I believe the three roles that Mary, Martha and Lazarus represented are the same roles we as Christians should strive to represent on a daily basis.
Martha represents service. John 12:2 says, “A dinner was prepared in Jesus’ honor. Martha served.” Martha wanted the best for her friend Jesus, so I’m sure she preferred the most excellent dinner. This is what the Christian life is about, serving others and doing so in an excellent manner.
Mary represents worship. John 12:3 says, “Then Mary took a twelve-ounce jar of expensive perfume made from essence of nard and she anointed Jesus’ feet with it; wiping his feet with her hair.” Mary went all out in her expression of worship, anointing her Lord with a jar of expensive perfume that was equivalent to a year’s salary. Mary did not care what others thought; all she knew was that she wanted to give him her very best. Am I giving Jesus my very best in my worship towards him?
Lazarus represents witness. John 12:9 says, “When all the people heard of Jesus’ arrival, they flocked to see him and to see Lazarus, the man Jesus had raised from the dead.” Lazarus’ life served as a witness to Jesus being ability to perform miracles and Jesus being who He proclaimed to be – the Son of God.
As I read John 12, I found myself asking, “What do I represent?” Which one of these areas needs more of my focus when it comes to my relationship with Christ? I do believe the Christian life ought to be a beautiful balance of service, worship and witness. Therefore, it is my prayer that we as believers would examine our hearts and ask ourselves, “Am I bringing joy to Jesus’ heart by my service, worship and witness?”
If you would like me to join you in prayer, please e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I would love to pray for you!