Read: John 12.1-9
Many times, when doing things for God, we, as Christians, are ridiculed and mocked. Or sometimes, people criticize our deeds because they don’t understand or for many other reasons.
That must have been how Mary, Lazarus’ sister, felt at the beginning of this chapter… ridiculed and mocked. During a dinner, Mary brought in some very expensive and fragrant ointment and used it to annoint Jesus’ feet. Afterwards, she used her hair to wipe His feet off. Nowadays in orthodox Jewish culture, a woman’s hair is meant for her husband’s eyes only. The women will oftentimes wear a wig in public. I can’t say for this specific time in history, but I think that we can agree that this was a very intimate act of humility. I wouldn’t be surprised if the people at that dinner were curious and maybe a little uncomfortable at what was happening in front of them, and one person even said something out loud.
Judas, the betrayer, pipes up and exclaims that Mary should have sold that ointment for quite a bit of money and given it to the poor. You may initially agree with Judas, but he mainly vocalized this because he was the keeper of the purse, a snake, and a thief.
Notice Mary’s response.
Exactly. Nothing. She may not have known the significance of her actions. I wouldn’t be surprised if she were doing this to praise Jesus because He brought her brother, Lazarus, back to life. But when someone stood against her actions, instead of getting loud mouthed and spouting back, she just silently endured. And you know what? Jesus came to her defense. He honored her actions, knew she was sincere in her worship, surveyed what was happening, and stood up for Mary.
When God calls us to action, we may be scared of what others think, but it doesn’t really matter. Being obedient to God’s call is more important than others opinions. We can also remember that when people speak out against us for standing for God, we don’t have to worry about defending ourselves and our situation, God can do that all on His own.