We all want to feel special and appreciated. Can you imagine being referred to as “less” or “the other?” How would that make you feel? Would you feel like you weren’t being valued or that people didn’t love you? Would you simply give up, stomp your feet, or rant and rave? Not being noticed or praised for your actions and abilities can be heartbreaking, but are we ALL supposed to be superstars?
Last week, I did a lot of reading about the crucifixion of Jesus. There are a lot of people mentioned either at the crucifixion or who visited the tomb. Many of them were named Mary, which is not surprising since that was one of the most popular names at that time. But, when I was reading an account by Matthew, the details guy, I was intrigued when he was talking about the Marys at the tomb.
61 Mary Magdalene and the other Mary were sitting there opposite the tomb.
28 After the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb.
Not once, but twice, Matthew referred to “the other” Mary as being at the tomb. Since there were several Marys in the Bible, I was curious about this one, and why was she called “the other.” Obviously, we all know the Mother Mary and Mary Magdalene, but “the other” Mary wasn’t mentioned near as often.
Come to find out, “the other” Mary was the mother of James and Joses. If it wasn’t enough that she was called, “the other,” her son, James was referred to as “the less.” If any family had a right to have a complex, it would be this family.
James was one of the twelve disciples, so he wasn’t a nobody. Jesus knew him and Jesus hand-picked James to follow Him. Like the name, Mary, James was a popular name in those times. So, my guess is that the term “less” isn’t used to determine his worth, but to distinguish between him and another James. Maybe it is because he was smaller in height or girth, maybe it is because he was younger, or maybe it was because he was quiet in nature.
I saw where there was an author name Kuyper who wrote many Biblical based books, and in one (I can’t find the article) he called the other Mary a consonant, and Mary Magdalene a vowel. His analogy was interesting to me because there are only 5 vowels in the English alphabet and 21 consonants.
Using this analogy, Peter and Paul would be considered vowels, and James the less would be a consonant. There are only so many vowels but there are a lot of consonants. Is being a consonant a bad thing? I don’t think so, and here is my thinking.
For every STAR actor, you see a lot of supporting actors. Without the supporting characters, the story could not be told. Each person has a specific role to play, and not everyone is born to be the star. Not everyone would be comfortable having the attention of the spotlight thrown on them.
The Other Mary was a great supporting character. She supported Jesus and His ministry monetarily. She had resources that she could give, and her contributions helped Jesus and the disciples spread the Good News. This other Mary gave her sons to Jesus and allowed them to follow and serve the Lord.
This Other Mary, was one of the women who followed Jesus to Jerusalem and was present at the crucifixion. She was at the tomb when the angel of the Lord appeared and told them that Jesus was not there. She was among the first to anoint the dead body of Jesus with spices. Even though this other Mary was not a solo artist, she was a glorious part of the chorus.
The Lord notices all of us consonants! He sees our efforts and He hears our voices, even if they are quieter than others. The OTHER Mary was mentioned in the Bible and held a special place in the Lord’s heart and ministry. There were thousands of Mary’s during that time, but only a few were honored by name.
Don’t worry if your role is a consonant, you are loved just as much by the Lord!
To God Goes The Glory!
Have A Blessed Day!