Today we finish the book of Mark!
I reach the end of this book always expecting more chapters. But they aren't there. Surprise!
Mary and Mary were also surprised to find that Jesus wasn't where they expected to find Him. He was elsewhere. They were looking for Him in a tomb – a place where inanimate objects lie.
Jesus was not there. He was with the living. He still is.
Where do I seek Jesus? In a building that I normally call a church? A place I go to on Sundays? In a ceremony? He isn't there. He's with the living.
Scene of the day: a woman came in with a beautiful alabaster jar of expensive perfume made from essence of nard. She broke open the jar and poured the perfume over his head. (Mark 14.3)
This is my personal benchmark of worship, offering, ministry, and of living. Jesus deserves the best. Nothing less. (Even the woman's offering container was beautiful.)
Somtimes I get asked why I opt to use expensive material or equipment for ministry work. Or why go through the effort to do all this? The answer for me is the same: Jesus deserves the best that I can afford. He deserves the best I can do. He deserves nothing less. I miss the mark at times. But I personally try to keep that bar high. So that if I miss, at least I was still aiming high. Instead of aiming low and missing the target by so much more.
My living Lord deserves the best that my living may offer.
Like the woman with the alabaster jar, would you give what equates to your whole year’s salary to God (Mark 14.5)?
So we (me and my wife) were talking about that question above. We agree as a family that the whole income should already be God's. Not just our tithe. Not just the offering portion. 100% is God's. It's all His. His to work with, and do with as He pleases.
So the two disciples went into the city and found everything just as Jesus had said, and they prepared the Passover meal there. (Mark 14.16)
How often are we given an inner witness; a conviction; a leading that seems odd? We ask God what we should do (just as the two disciples did). In response, God gives us steps to follow which seem disconnected to what we expected the answer to be. But we follow, if a bit doubtful. Only to find, after taking each cautious step, that everything is just as God said it would be.