You see a beautiful rose, bathed in the Summer sunshine and pouring forth its sweetness. “I would have my life like the rose,’ you say. Yes; but where did the rose get its loveliness and its fragrance?
Down out of the sky, did it not? It looked up and opened its heart, and the sun poured his warm beams into the flower’s bosom, and out of the air at night came the gentle dew and crept into the flower’s folds, and the beauty burst out and the sweetness flowed forth.
Would you have your life like the rose? You must commune with Christ. You must open your heart to the warmth of His love. You must take His words into your soul. You must let Him fill you with His own blessed life.
Mary’s eyes of prayer told of a great heart-hunger. She did not talk in Christ’s presence. She had nothing to say. She wanted Him to speak to her. And any word He spoke went deep down into her heart and became a blessing there, pouring its sweet influence through all her life.
Purity of heart purifies the whole soul, and transfigures the commonest life until it shines with almost angelic radiance. It is purity, gentleness, and grace in the heart, which, like the perfume of a flower, breathes out and bathes all the air about it in sweetness.
Peace is one of the elements of beauty in all Christian womanhood. Fretfulness, anxiety, discontent, irritability, or lack of self-control in any form, mars human loveliness. But peace makes the face shine. It gives quietness even in turbulence composure amid confusion, confidence in peril. It is a lamp of quiet joy in time of sorrow.
The secret of it is a heart fixed upon God. “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on Thee.” It is one of the blessings Christ gives out of His own life to the trusting one that sits at His feet. “My peace I give unto you,” He whispers. Every young girl should learn the secret of heart-peace. It is one of the sweetest charms of Christian womanhood.
Another quality of loveliness in Mary was her gentleness. Every glimpse we have of her shows this. When her sister chided her, she had no impatient answer, no retort of hurt feeling, such as we sometimes hear in a home, when criticism, just or unjust, is made by one of another. The sweetness of Mary’s spirit was not marred nor disturbed by Martha’s display of irritation, nor by her fretted anxiety.
Mary’s memorial has also its encouragement for those who would repeat the sweet story of her love. Jesus said: “Where so ever this gospel shall be preached throughout the whole world, that also which this woman hath done shall be spoken of for a memorial of her”.
So the story is written in among the records of Christ’s own last days, and is there kept as fresh all these centuries as if it had been wrought only yesterday. Why? Because it was done for Christ, out of love for Him.
That is the kind of memorial Christ keeps of any beautiful thing wrought for love of Him. He will forget nothing. Men go about with hammers, breaking the rocks, and find embedded in the heart of them the imprint of ferns, leaves, flowers, that fell on the soft clay long ages since. Every line and vein and fold is preserved in perfect feature.
Your smallest deeds of love for Christ, which seem to be forgotten,are writing their records these common days in God’s book of life and in the ages to come their story will be read by angels and men.
Taken from “MARY OF BETHANY“
by J.R. Miller
Published by Christian Reading Room © 1989
P.O.Box 78604, Mongkok, Kowloon, Hong Hong