Summary: “But Jesus said, ‘Let her alone. Why do you trouble her? She has done a good work for me. She has done what she could’” Mark 14:6, 8a.
Theme: Doing a good work for Christ
Thanksgiving is a very important aspect of our lives and always results in blessing. Every one of us has a reason to be thankful because every one of us has been blessed. Today we want to remember our many blessings and say thank you in an appropriate way by doing a good work for Christ. We do not have any excuse not to give because all of us have something valuable to give to the Lord. There are many different kinds of giving in the Scriptures and these include the giving of our time, our money, and our possessions. In fact, giving is the hallmark of the Christian faith and the Bible itself is a book on giving. In it we are told of how God gave life to man, how He created the world for him and gave him dominion over every other creature. In it we are told of how God gave man a home in the Garden of Eden and, when man fell, He gave him a promise of redemption. In it we are told of how God gave the Israelites the Law to make them aware of sin and how He gave His greatest gift to us, His Son Jesus Christ, to pay the penalty for our sin and give us eternal life. In it we are told of how God has given us the Church to nurture the believer and bring him to spiritual maturity. In fact the very essence of Christianity is about giving. The cross, the symbol of our faith speaks of giving. It was the place where God so loved the world that He gave His only Son. The Bible is also the story of man giving back to God. Cain and Abel brought gifts to God. When Noah got off the ark, he gave an offering to God. The Jews gave tithes and free-will offerings to God. And the church is to give. “Let every one of you lay by in store as God has prospered him" (I Corinthians 16:2). As Christians we give out of love for God. He loved us first, has done so much for us and continues to do so much for us. The more we understand that, the greater our love for Him becomes. And if we really loved Him, we would do everything for Him. Mary really loved Jesus Christ. She loved Him because He first loved her and had done many things in her life. She loved Him so much that she did what many present thought was a foolish thing. She gave her best to Christ. In the same way Christ has done so much for us. He gave His life for the Church and as a Church we should be a fellowship of believers, doing a good work for Christ.
Christ can only be served in the appropriate way when we have a relationship with Him - when we give ourselves to Him and are committed to Him. Jesus demonstrated what commitment is by coming to earth to restore our broken relationship with God. A commitment to a relationship leads to service and Jesus did not come to earth to be served, but to serve. A Church committed to a relationship with Christ is called to serve. We are called to use our time, our talents, and our resources to serve the Church and to serve others. We are all called to give ourselves as a source of help to the kingdom of God. We can only do this when we use what we have to glorify God.
There are many villages and towns in the Middle East but a small village by the name of Bethany near Jerusalem is known all over the world because of Mary’s commitment to Jesus Christ. God’s children are precious in His sight and their presence makes towns and countries famous in His sight. It was in this town that we first learn of Mary’s commitment to Christ. On one particular occasion Jesus was at the home of Mary and Martha. While Martha was busy catering for Him and His disciples, Mary sat down at the Lord’s feet to listen to what He was teaching His disciples. Mary by her action showed where her interest lay and used every opportunity to learn from Christ to meet her spiritual needs. Martha, however, was more interested in meeting physical needs - the demands of the flesh. Realising that she could not influence Mary to leave what she was doing, she appealed to Jesus for help. Jesus gently told her that Mary had chosen what was really necessary and that was to follow Him. God has chosen each one of us be a part of His family and the least we can do is to follow Him and be committed to Him. He has given each and everyone one of us certain gifts and certain talents that He expects to be used in a way that shows our commitment to Him. God has placed us at this time in this community and in this Church for a reason. He has placed within each and every one of us a special or unique gift to use to glorify the kingdom of God. What are we doing with our gifts to glorify God in our Church? Has God not placed us here for a time like this? Commitment is demonstrated in actions and nothing is too little for the Lord to use. When a little boy gave his meal of two fish and five loaves of bread to the Lord it was used to glorify Him. He was glorified as He fed five thousand people excluding women and children. It does not matter what it is we have to give. Each and every one of us has something that we can give to help the Church. If you are musically talented then help in the music department and lead in praise and worship. If you have a lot of knowledge of the Bible join the Bible study leaders and teach the Word of God. If God has blessed you financially be a financial blessing to the Church. We should not worry about what we have to give. Whatever it is, God will bless and use it to glorify His name.