There are several different Marys mentioned in the Bible with the virgin mother of Jesus being the most famous. But we hear about this particular Mary in Matthew 27:55-56:
And many women who followed Jesus from Galilee, ministering to Him, were there looking on from afar, among whom were Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Joses, and the mother of Zebedee’s sons.
The verse above takes place during the crucifixion of Jesus the Christ. Remember the twelve disciples who had been called by Jesus, taught by Jesus, and served by Jesus? Most of them collapsed like a tower of LEGOs when it came time for Jesus to die. Judas was the one to betray him. Peter denied him three times. And the rest of the guys scattered out of fear.
Only one, John, stayed by Jesus throughout His brutal crucifixion. And joining John were a faithful group of women who had followed Jesus from Galilee throughout his entire ministry and helped to take care of His needs. Mary, the mother of James and Joses, was in this group. Even though she had not been specifically called, her appearance at Jesus’ crucifixion shows just how much she believed in Him and loved Him. Even though women could not be disciples, Mary was courageous in identifying herself as one of Jesus’ followers and she followed Him in whatever way she could; even to the cross on Golgotha and to the tomb. What can we learn from this Mary, mother of James and Joses?
1. Mary followed Jesus faithfully. The mother of James and Joses is not as well-known as the mother of Jesus or even Mary Magdalene. Some have called her “the other Mary.” But Mary did not follow Jesus to have her name known. She did not follow Jesus to have her story written in the Bible. Mary faithfully followed Jesus because she loved Him. In life and in death, she sought ways to help and minister to her Saviour.
We too must faithfully decide to follow Jesus. After all He has done for us, we need to show our gratitude by serving Him in faith and love. God does not want our money, our clothes, our friends, or any of our possessions. God wants us. He wants our hands to help others. He wants our voice to speak the Gospel of truth and peace. He wants out feet to be walking the straight and narrow way. He wants our minds to think on Godly things. He wants our hearts to beat in unity with His. God wants us.
It does not matter if we have a big role like the mother of Jesus or a little role like the mother of James and Joses. In God’s story, all are equally valuable and equally needed. What matters is if we faithfully follow Jesus.