Today is our 61st broadcast “1, 2, 3 STORY TIME”, for you children but also for our relatives and friends. We are going to find Jesus with his friends, people he has healed, people he has blessed. They are going to thank him each in their own way. A woman has chosen to give Him the most precious thing she owns, her treasure. So, without delay, let’s listen this story that you will find in the Gospel of Mark at the beginning of chapter 14.
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Full text of this story :
A GIFT FOR JESUS
In six days, it will be the great feast of the Passover. Jesus is in Bethany, a small village near Jerusalem. Simon lives in this village. He says to Jesus: – Come to my house with your disciples, I invite you. I have prepared a great meal. It’s a joy and an honor for me to welcome you. I‘ve been so happy since you cured me of leprosy. Before, I was forced to live far from my family, my friends. I was in terrible pain. I was finished and you saved me I thank you infinitely! Among the guests, there is Lazarus. In Bethany, he has always been well known and his two sisters, Martha and Mary as well. But now they are talking about him in Jerusalem and all over the country. – Do you know what happened in Bethany? People say. – Yes! This is where Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead. This man had been dead for four days! – What a miracle! I believe that Jesus is a messenger from God. But the leaders of the synagogue are trying to arrest him. It’s terrible! And yet he only does good. Indeed, the priests have decided to arrest Jesus and put him to death but they don’t know how to do it: – It must be done in secret they say to themselves, because since the resurrection of Lazarus, more and more people are following Him. There could be a riot, a violent demonstration.” At Simon’s, the meal continues. Lazarus is happy to share these moments with Jesus. He is so grateful to Him that He resurrected him. His sister Martha is there too, of course! She is very busy preparing food and serving guests: – I owe Him everything, she often repeats. He brought back to life to my brother who was dead. And Mary, where is she? Didn’t she come to meet Jesus? Oh! She’s not far. She is getting ready. In her own way, she will tell Jesus how much she loves him, how grateful she is to Him. Look here she comes She doesn’t make any noise. She delicately holds in her hands the most precious thing she has, all her treasure, a magnificent alabaster flask. She draws near to Jesus, places herself behind him. She breaks the cap of the bottle. Immediately, in the house, a delicious odour spreads. Her bottle contains a perfume of great quality. She pours some on Jesus’ head, then she kneels down and pours some more on His feet. And wipes them with her long hair. Jesus says nothing. The astonished guests look. The disciples whisper among themselves: – But, what is Mary doing! Breaking a vase of this price and emptying all the perfume, but this is insane! She could have poured only a few drops. It was enough! This is such waste! Among them is Judas. He doesn’t really love Jesus. He had always hoped that Jesus would become king and he would be a very powerful and above all very rich minister: – What a waste! He says. This perfume was worth over three hundred denarii, the salary of a whole year‘s work! This woman would have done better giving it to us. We could have sold it and given the money to the poor. Is Judas really concerned about the poor? No! Not at all, he’s a thief. He thinks about this money he could have put in his pocket. He is very angry. Mary has heard. Her joy is gone. She lowers her head. She is on the verge of tears. Jesus begins to speak: – Why are you upsetting this woman? She did a good deed. There will always be poor people in your midst. You will give money to them but, I will not always be with you. Mary did what she could. Do you know why she did this? She has perfumed my body because I will soon die. Listen carefully to what I’m going to tell you. What Mary has just done today will never be forgotten. All over the world, it will be told. The disciples bow their heads. They are ashamed. Suddenly a man gets up. His face is hard, closed. He comes out of the house and leaves in the night. It’s Judas. He goes to meet the enemies of the Lord, the heads of the synagogue and says: – How much will you give me if I help you to arrest Jesus without people knowing? – Thirty pieces of silver! – It’s a deal! When the time comes, I will let you know. He leaves them and returns to Jesus as if nothing had happened Nobody knows what he has just done except Jesus who knows everything. He does not say anything. Mary is happy. She wanted to show Jesus how much she loves him. She did what she could and Jesus told her how much He appreciates her gift. And you see, even today, the story of Mary’s perfume is told just as Jesus had announced!
1, 2 3, 4 AND YOU AND ME! Mary listened to her heart. She did all she could to show Jesus how much she loved him. She gave him the most precious thing she had and Jesus understood her message. He received her gift with joy. He stood up for her in front of everyone else. You remember what he said? “What Mary has done is good. It was a good deed! “. And you, what can you offer Jesus to show him that you love him? What is the most precious thing you have? Your life! Your heart! So you can say to him: “Jesus, I give you my life, I give you my heart.”
4, 3, 2, 1 AND WE PARENTS! I really like these words of Jesus: “Why are you upsetting this woman, she did all she could». We too can also hurt our children if we don’t pay enough attention to what they are doing to express their attachment to Jesus. It’s up to us to understand that behind their actions, their words, there is an expression of love even if in our eyes they may seem worthless, maybe even ridiculous Let us be careful not to hurt them and let us encourage them to express to Jesus their gratitude and love.