St. Paul Lutheran Church, Runge: Are you a Mary, a Martha, or a Judas?
The Gospel lesson for Sunday, March 17 at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Runge was John 12:1-8. Jesus was visiting the home of Lazarus and his sisters, Mary and Martha. Earlier Jesus had raised Lazarus from the dead and now many believed in Jesus because of that miracle. As Martha was preparing a meal and Lazarus was visiting with Jesus, Mary anointed Jesus' feet with pure nard and wiped them with her hair. Judas Iscariot was present there also and rebuked Mary for wasting the expensive oil as he claimed that it could have been sold and the money given to the poor. Judas was already known to be a thief and really did not care about the poor. Jesus' reply was to leave Mary alone. This act of anointment and Jesus' response to it do not teach us to ignore the poor so we can spend money extravagantly for Christ. This was a unique act for a specific occasion--an anointing that anticipated Jesus' burial and a public declaration of faith in him as Messiah.
Who are you in this gospel? Are you the woman who wants to honor Jesus by anointing him? Are you Martha, serving food and staying in the background? Or are you that disciple whose desire was to siphon money away towards purposes that you believe are better than Christ's? Jesus reminds us that there are many ways to honor God. The key is to find that thing we can do which connects us most deeply to Jesus.
Worship services at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Runge begin at 8:30 a.m. Sunday mornings with adult Bible Study of Revelation and children's Sunday School following. Wednesday night is the Lenten service at 5 p.m. followed by supper. Third Thursday Fellowship with lunch at 12:30 will be on March 21. All are invited to come and see.