Wednesday, June 5, 2013

God's Hall Of Fame

What qualifies people to enter the hall of fame? The answer to this question lies on who is giving the answer.

To enter into the world's hall of fame, the answer seems pretty obvious - wealth, beauty, royalty, a good name, prestige and many more such things. With God, the yardstick is very different! God's definition of a hero is way different from ours. The hall-of-fame in God's kingdom has nothing to do with all I have mentioned above. It rather has everything to do with touching God's heart. In God's hall of fame, you would see the uncommon and "unworthy names" like that of Mary Magdalene, the street girl, who touched His heart.

Now I assure you that wherever this gospel is preached all over the world, what she has done would be told in memory of her.  Matthew 26: 13
 Isn't that quite interesting? I have been reading the story of this woman from the different books of the Bible, and from 2 other Christian literatures in the last couple of days, and with each passing day, I am realizing how much there is to learn from her. There were 3 different accounts of her either anointing the Lord Jesus or attempting to do so (after His death and burial ). In all the accounts, one thing is certain - this was a woman who didn't give a hoot about what others thought about her. All she cared about was her worship to the master. She stooped low, gave her all - her worship, and in the process commanded heavens attention. In the midst of all the Pharisees ( the religious leaders of her days) and the 12 disciples ( the Deacons, the Pastors and Bishops), her worship of the master came up for special mention, so much so that she entered into heavens hall of fame, while the others watched on!

In Luke 7, Apostle Luke detailed the 1st account of this woman. She must have gate crashed this party. She was definitely not invited, and for sure, not welcome. A certain Pharisee, Simon, had invited Jesus over to his house for dinner and Jesus obliged. Everyone in town knew Simon. He was a good man, religious, and upwardly mobile. Everyone also knew Mary- the popular street girl, the prostitute. No one certainly expected her at such an event. Somehow she got in, and gave us the opportunity to learn a very big lesson.

I have been wondering how Simon, being a Pharisee who pays a lot of attention to outward appearance, missed washing Jesus's feet. If not for Jesus' sake, I thought he would have done that out of religious courtesy, or out of a need to keep his rugs and carpets clean! Somehow he didn't and no one seemed to care. No one, except Mary. I am sure there would have been at least 12 other persons there (if all the disciples were present), but no one cared. There were carried away by other matters. I suppose that Simon got a little worried on sighting Mary. " How on earth did this woman get in here? Who allowed her in?" he must have been asking.

Mary came to the party with a box, an alabaster box. It was probably her most priced possession. She decided to do what Simon didn't do. She washed the masters feet with her tears, dried them with her hair (which is her glory) and anointed it with her most priced possession. In simple terms, she emptied herself on Him. She gave Him real worship. She poured herself on the master, not minding who was watching or who wasn't.

Make no mistake, it took humility and brokenness for Mary to wipe the Lord's feet with her hair. If you understand that in Jesus' time, open sandals were commonly used, and most travelers in Israel shared the same roads with Camels, Horses and Donkeys, then, you will begin the appreciate her gesture more. What a picture of humble worship Mary provides.

When last have you worshipped the master with reckless abandon - without being all together and politically correct? When last has your worship brought the master so much satisfaction? When last has God said " that was good" after your worship? Little wonder why the master dismissed Mary, forgiving her of her many sins, and saying " Your faith has saved you ; go in peace " .


Selah.

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