Today’s verse: John 12:1-8 (Msg)
“Six days before Passover, Jesus entered Bethany where Lazarus, so recently raised from the dead, was living. Lazarus and his sisters invited Jesus to dinner at their home. Martha served. Lazarus was one of those sitting at the table with them. Mary came in with a jar of very expensive aromatic oils, anointed and massaged Jesus’ feet, and then wiped them with her hair. The fragrance of the oils filled the house.
Judas Iscariot, one of his disciples, even then getting ready to betray him, said, “Why wasn’t this oil sold and the money given to the poor? It would have easily brought three hundred silver pieces.” He said this not because he cared two cents about the poor but because he was a thief. He was in charge of their common funds, but also embezzled them.
Jesus said, “Let her alone. She’s anticipating and honoring the day of my burial. You always have the poor with you. You don’t always have me.”
Today is Holy Wednesday, also known as Spy Wednesday. This is the day that Judas betrayed Jesus to the Sanhedrin. The idea being, that Judas was sneaky like a spy among the disciples, thus the name “Spy” Wednesday. This act is turning point in the life of Jesus. When I reflect on this time in Jesus’s life, I keep coming back to the story in the verses above. Picture it, Jesus and the disciples having dinner at Lazarus, Martha and Mary’s house in Bethany. His good friend Lazarus, whom he brought back to life, actually raised from the dead. Now that is a good friend to have indeed!
I have to admit every time I read this story, It is with a heavy heart that I realize that I am Martha, serving, working, probably a little frustrated (maybe a lot frustrated) with having company, and Mary laying around. I want to be Mary, I want to touch and adore Jesus, I want to be an adorer but alas, I am a server. That is the gift I was created with.
Then I see Judas. Even though it says in this verse that he was a thief. I still understand his statement, “Why wasn’t this oil sold and money given to the poor.” I think thoughts like this in my own life, think of what can be accomplished if, instead of buying a pair of Jimmy Choo’s power pumps for $1000, we buy a pair of Naturalizers for $70 and give the rest to a homeless shelter. $930 can feed and clothe a lot of people!
Maybe, subconsciously I am identifying with the Judas that I see portrayed in Jesus Christ Superstar, a handsome young man struggling with doing what he felt was right then overcome with the guilt. I really do identify with the feelings of guilt too! I guess to sum it up I am a guilt ridden, frustrated server/helper. Honestly, I know that is not really true. I am so much more than that.
For today, this Holy Wednesday in the final week of lent, I am going to focus on basking in the glory of Christ and all that his life and death holds for me. I am going to be like Mary. Lay myself at the feet of Christ and show care and adoration.
I am going to take to heart the words that I have been given, telling me, in no uncertain terms, that I am special, beloved and that the Spirit of Grace abounds around and through me.
Will you join me?