Son, Mother | Devotion #5: The Face of Christ
Holly Boston | Women’s Ministry Director
On a number of occasions, I have been faced with the question, “What if you are the only face of Christ they ever see?” This is a sobering question. It should provoke us to examine how well we are representing Christ. In 2 Corinthians 5:20 we read that if you know Christ as your personal Savior, you are called to be His ambassador or representative. It further states that through us, God makes an appeal to the lost. It can sound very scary! In a nutshell, we are to draw others to Christ by the way we live.
Jesus made seven statements from the cross just before He died. There is one statement that I believe reflects the core of Christ’s heart and the key to representing Him well.
John 19: 26-27 says, “When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, ‘Woman, behold your son!’ Then he said to the disciple, ‘Behold your mother!’ And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home.”
Jesus, the Son of God, had been tried and found guilty of blasphemy. Even though He was an innocent man, He was abandoned by all, beaten, publicly humiliated, and sentenced to death. Not only was He physically and emotionally suffering to the point of death, but He was spiritually broken. With the weight of the sin of the world upon Him, He experienced separation from His Heavenly Father for the first time. With all that He was going through, He looked down at Mary and said, “Woman behold your son!” Incredible! Jesus is moments from death, and He saw His mother’s need. Think back to the most painful time in your life. What was your response? I am ashamed to say that I have responded to much less with paralyzing anxiety. I have been known to doubt God’s goodness, His perfect plan, and His love. Suffice it to say, other people’s needs were not even on my radar. Regardless of the circumstances, Jesus was focused on His mission: to serve (Matthew 20:28) and to save (1 Timothy 1:15).
Do you see the needs of those around you? Are you too concerned with the busyness or struggles of this world to notice? Christian, if this is you, you need an eternal perspective. Colossians 3:2 says, “Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.” Jesus was selfless, and people were His priority. God’s Word outlines the practice of freeing us from our struggles, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7). In summary, change your focus, see the need.
The second part of Jesus’ statement is to John: “Behold, your mother.” Jesus saw the need, and He met the need. We not only should see the need of others but we should help meet their need. Have you ever listened to someone share a need or a problem and carelessly responded with; “I’ll pray for you” with little or no intentions of doing so? Pray on the spot! While you are lifting up their situation in prayer, ask God to show you how you can help. Praying is the most powerful thing we can do for someone, but maybe you are intended to be the answer to the prayer. God will equip you for the work He calls you to (Ephesians 4:12). Romans 12:1 urges us to “present your bodies as a living sacrifice.” In essence, give each day to God. Ask Him to use you for His glory. He will give you eyes to see and the heart to help. If the struggles of this life have consumed your attention, give it to God. When the going gets tough, the tough get serving! Tremendous joy and peace come from selfless living.