“He went on through cities and villages, proclaiming and bringing the good news of the kingdom of God. And the twelve were with him, and also some women who had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities: Mary, called Magdalene, from whom seven demons had gone out, and Joanna, the wife of Chuza, Herod’s household manager, and Susanna, and many others, who provided for them out of their means.” Luke 8:1-3
“There were also women looking on from a distance, among whom were Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James the younger and of Joses, and Salome. When he was in Galilee, they followed him and ministered to him, and there were also many other women who came up with him to Jerusalem…
“Joseph… laid him in a tomb [and] rolled a stone against the entrance of the tomb. Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joses saw where he was laid…
“When the Sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices, so that they might go and anoint him.” Mark 15:40-41,46-47; 16:1
I am Mary, one of the many captivated by this man Jesus. From the first time I met Him, I saw something distinct, wholly other from anyone I knew. His eyes seemed to pierce my heart with a palpable tenderness, and to know all about me- but love me anyway. They calmed me with an indescribable sense of having worth, of being cherished because of who I am, not what I’ve done. He freed me to release my past, knowing somehow my value was above and beyond it. He had an exquisite rhythm of purpose and timeliness every day, but was never in a hurry. He embraced every opportunity to speak, bless, and heal- always doing good. I can’t even describe the power that emanated from Him, and drew crowds like a magnet.
The truth of who He was and why He came sank in, and in a mysterious way took over, and I believed in His saving grace to me. I can only describe the experience as supernatural. I was a different person- with new desires, motivations, and outlook on my life, and all of life, that now have eternal significance.
So I followed Him. I traveled with Him. I and the others did what we could to refresh Him and tend to His practical needs so He could do what He did best among the people. Watching His graciousness, His strength under absolute control and gentleness sublimely expressed, and listening to His carefully chosen, never extraneous words, had deep effect on me. I delighted in giving to Him and found, in His strange economy, that I received much more in return. (Proverbs 11:25; Luke 6:38; Romans 15:32)
To you I say, He is alive, and worth following! While He’s not here in the flesh, He is in Spirit, dwelling in you to help you help His people. When you minister to them, and support those who labor over you, you are ministering to Him. Would you make it your mission to join Him on His? (Matthew 25:34-40; Galatians 6:6; 1 Thessalonians 5:12-13)
Lord Jesus, you are the only celebrity I admire and long to follow. Teach me Your ways, and have sway over all my heart, so my days and ways bring you glory.