Lenten Devotional // Day 37

Wednesday, April 13

Mark 14:3-9
Jesus was at Bethany visiting the house of Simon, who had a skin disease. During dinner, a woman came in with a vase made of alabaster and containing very expensive perfume of pure nard. She broke open the vase and poured the perfume on his head. Some grew angry. They said to each other, “Why waste the perfume? This perfume could have been sold for almost a year’s pay and the money given to the poor.” And they scolded her.
Jesus said, “Leave her alone. Why do you make trouble for her? She has done a good thing for me. You always have the poor with you; and whenever you want, you can do something good for them. But you won’t always have me. She has done what she could. She has anointed my body ahead of time for burial. I tell you the truth that, wherever in the whole world the good news is announced, what she’s done will also be told in memory of her.”

I often think about this moment in the Bible where an unknown woman anoints Jesus’ body for burial. No one knew who she was and yet she plays a significant role in preparing Jesus for His death and resurrection. Jesus told everyone to leave her alone because she was important in His story.

I can name a number of people who have played a significant role in my life and ministry. We all have the people in our lives who have impacted us and maybe we do not directly remember their names. I think about some of the kids I used to teach in my Sunday school classes when I was in high school. I couldn’t tell you all their names but they helped me learn that I eventually wanted to go into children’s ministry in some way. I remember one time in a classroom a kid told me that I had patience with them that they usually didn’t get from their other teachers. I remember thinking that day that I wanted to make sure that I kept my patience in classrooms because it seemed important to that student.

We each have people we remember who have helped us get to where we are today. Maybe it’s family members, friends or mentors. I’m sure you can make a long or short list right now. However, we all have nameless people who also have led us down the path we are on. They encourage us in a certain way, or nudge us towards the place we are. Those people could be a nurse that helped you or a person you sat next to on an airplane. They all are important and have impacted us somehow.

Question for Contemplation
Think back through some pivotal decision in your life, who were the people both unknown and known in those decisions?

Lord, we are so grateful for this woman who anointed Jesus. We know that she was incredibly important in His story. We are thankful for people in our lives who have impacted us, both those known and unknown. We cannot thank them enough for the roles they have played but we are so incredibly grateful. We love you. Amen.

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