She Did What She Could

Ever since reading the book, She Did What She Could: Five Words of Jesus That Will Change Your Life by Elisa Morgan, each Easter I think about this “Easter story” again. As a symbol of preparing for Jesus’ burial, Mary of Bethany poured expensive perfume on Jesus’ feet, and while others criticized her for being wasteful, Jesus said she had done a good thing. He said, “She did what she could.”

Mary acted out of her relationship with Jesus – because she had received love, she gave it. It was her act of worship to God.

Most of us care about poverty, injustice, the sick, the marginalized, world peace, and more. But we get weighed down with our own agendas, our own worries, our own little worlds. We worry that we are too small and insignificant to really make a difference in our community and/or in the world. But there is something we can do.

We’re not going to get it right all the time, but we’re called to live love. God will honor that.

Read Mark 14: 3-9. Then ask yourself these questions:

1. What if Mary hadn’t opened that perfume and poured it on Jesus? What if she had done it in private, or decided to wait until later? Jesus would still have done what He came to do, but would Jesus have been encouraged and affirmed? Would it have meant so much to Jesus? Would he have called it a “beautiful thing?” Mary did what she could when she could do it.

2. What motivates you to do what you do for others or for Jesus? Is it out of a sense of guilt or obligation? Or is it a result of a relationship with someone or with Jesus? How could you make it an act of worship?

3. Our “to do” lists get long. We are told we can’t be everything to everyone. But maybe we do the wrong things instead of the important things. What should be on your “to do” list? Like Mary, what could you do?

Like Mary, I am inspired to do what I can.

Submitted by Ginny Birky

For further reflection, today we’re reading John 5:1-15 in our community lenten reader.