Twelve Lessons We Can Learn From Two Marys


Lessons from Mary the Mother of Jesus

In her book, The Path to Peace, Ann Swindell discusses lessons we can learn from different women in the Bible. The following six lessons are lessons Ann suggests we can learn from Mary, the mother of Jesus.

Accept God’s Call

Mary’s acceptance of God’s call to give birth to his son was all about what God wanted. Not what Mary wanted. Accepting God’s plan cost Mary more than she could have imagined. Nevertheless, she embraced God’s plan as God’s servant with humble obedience.

And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her. Luke 1:38 KJV

Believe God Knows What He Is Doing

Mary wasn’t pregnant when Gabriel told her God’s plan. She could have said no. The invitation to accept God’s call on our life often comes at times where we have to give God our yes before we can see the outcome. We say yes, believing we serve a good Father.

Image by Bernd from PixabayTrust God When It Doesn’t Make Sense

Mary watched her son die without seeming intervention. All the dreams, hopes, and promises Mary received from God through Gabriel must have seemed to disintegrate in front of her. Not one bit of it made sense.

Now there stood by the cross of Jesus his mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalene. John 19:25 KJV

In Time God’s Plan Will Be Revealed

Although what Mary saw seemed hopeless, God knew what he was doing. There was a plan at work Mary could not yet understand. In time, it would be revealed.

God Is In Control

As Jesus hung dying on the cross, he made earthly provision for his mother. Jesus asked his disciple and cousin, John, to take care of her. Even on our worst day, in our worst possible moment, God sees, God cares, God loves, God provides. And most importantly, God is in control.

When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son!

Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home. John 19:26-27 KJV

There Is Hope After The Darkness

There is hope after the darkness. Jesus appeared to his loved ones after his resurrection and before he returned to his throne in heaven. Hope was reborn. Mary was there to witness it.

Then returned they unto Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is from Jerusalem a sabbath day’s journey.

And when they were come in, they went up into an upper room, where abode both Peter, and James, and John, and Andrew, Philip, and Thomas, Bartholomew, and Matthew, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon Zelotes, and Judas the brother of James.

 These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren. Acts 1:12-14 KJV

Lessons from Mary Magdalene Disciple of Christ

Jesus Brings Light Into Our Situations

Jesus can bring light into even our darkest situations. Luke tells us Jesus freed Mary Magdalene from seven demons. We don’t know the specifics. We don’t know the details. All we know is before she encountered Christ, Mary’s life must have been unbearable.

And it came to pass afterward, that he went throughout every city and village, preaching and shewing the glad tidings of the kingdom of God: and the twelve were with him,

And certain women, which had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities, Mary called Magdalene, out of whom went seven devils, Luke 8:1-2 KJV

Our Response To Jesus Should Be Thankfulness

Once freed, our immediate response should be thankfulness and service. In gratitude for being released from the demons that tortured her, Mary devoted her life in service to Jesus as one of his disciples. Again, Luke tells us Mary and other women supported Christ’s ministry out of their own means.

And Joanna the wife of Chuza Herod’s steward, and Susanna, and many others, which ministered unto him of their substance. Luke 8:3 KJV

Relinquishing Our Dreams Is Hard

Whenever we have to relinquish our dreams to Jesus and let go of what we want, there will be sorrow. Pre-resurrection, the death of Mary’s dream to follow Jesus all the days of her life died with him on the cross. Her hope was in the person of Jesus. Now what was she to do?

Do The Next Thing

Do the next thing. Mary may not have known what her life would be like without Jesus, but she knew she had to do the next thing. She knew Christ deserved a proper burial. She was determined to see that happen.

The first day of the week cometh Mary Magdalene early, when it was yet dark, unto the sepulchre, and seeth the stone taken away from the sepulchre. John 20:1 KJV

Wrongs Are Made Right In Jesus

Everything wrong will be made right in Jesus.

To me, one of the most tender passages in all Scripture is the scene where Jesus meets Mary Magdalene outside the tomb that once held his sacrificed, lifeless body.

It brings tears to my eyes every single time I read it. Everything that seemed so wrong for Mary Magdalene at that moment in time, became right the instant her Lord Jesus spoke her name and she recognized his voice.

Then the disciples went away again unto their own home.

But Mary stood without at the sepulchre weeping: and as she wept, she stooped down, and looked into the sepulchre,

And seeth two angels in white sitting, the one at the head, and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had lain.

And they say unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? She saith unto them, Because they have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him.

And when she had thus said, she turned herself back, and saw Jesus standing, and knew not that it was Jesus.

Jesus saith unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? whom seekest thou? She, supposing him to be the gardener, saith unto him, Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away.

Jesus saith unto her, Mary. She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, Master. John 20:10-16 KJV

Go Tell The Good News

Go and tell.

Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God. John 20:17 KJV

Your Turn

Like both Marys, when we let go of our plans and dreams and embrace what God has for us, there is peace in the midst of circumstances we didn’t choose. Even in our deepest darkness and greatest need, Jesus knows us. Jesus knows our name. He sees us. He loves us. Jesus is our hope. He is our peace.

If that doesn’t bring joy to our hearts and a tear to our eyes, I don’t know what does.

Our response to Christ’s unfailing love should be a willing, humble heart of obedience and service.

Because of what Jesus accomplished through his death, burial, and resurrection–the defeat of hell, sin, Satan, and death–every pain, sorrow, and hurt we experience will one day be redeemed, restored, and made new.

Questions for Consideration

The following questions for us to consider come from The Path to Peace.

  • When you feel God asking you to step out of your comfort zone for him, do you put aside what you want and embrace what he wants?
  • Do you find it difficult to trust God and accept what he is calling you to do without proof it will all turn out all right?
  • How do you react when you are obedient, but things don’t turn out the way you thought they would or should?
  • How do you hold onto God’s promises in the darkness when nothing makes sense?

I wish you well.


Photos courtesy Pixabay.

Sandy Kirby Quandt

Sandy Kirby Quandt is a follower of Jesus with a passion for history and travel. Passions that often weave their way into her stories and articles. She writes articles, devotions, and stories for adult and children publications. She is a regular contributor to Guideposts devotional books, as well as a conference speaker. Sandy has won multiple awards for her writing, including several years in the Young Adult category of the Writer’s Digest Annual Writing Competition. However, her greatest honor came when she received the Right Stuff Award at Space Camp for Educators. Looking for words of encouragement or gluten-free recipes? Then check out her blog at

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