We are going to take a glimpse into the home of Mary, the Mother of John Mark. Mark as we know him, the Mark who wrote the Gospel of Mark. Not only is Mary a women who used her home and resources to bless others. She raised a son who followed Jesus, who led by the Holy Spirit, wrote about Jesus, we still read his words today in the Gospel of Mark. I would wager that Mary was not only a great hostess, but a great mother as well.
We find Mary’s home mentioned in the book of Acts when persecution of Christians is on the rise and a gathering believers of Jesus was a great risk. What I love about Mary is fear did not stop her. Oh… how fear and insecurity stop us on so many levels. To break free of both is powerful and life changing.
It is believed that Mary’s home was spacious, since large groups could gather there. It is also believed that she was a woman who had resources, since she was able to feed so many. A husband is never mentioned and the home is spoken of as, the home of Mary. So, when he had considered this, he came to the house of Mary, the mother of John whose surname was Mark, where many were gathered together praying. Acts 12:12
This is the only verse we hear of Mary, but this verse tells us much. Peter, by the hand of God escapes prison. The first place he goes is Mary’s home, where his friends are gathered there praying for him. A young woman named Rhoda opens the door for Peter, showing us that Mary had servants in her home, again showing us Mary has some wealth.
There is more to Mary’s home than space, wealth and servants. Mary’s home was a home of prayer, a home of ministry and a safe haven.
Mary’s home ~ had the Heart of God. The early church met there and what beautiful times they must have had. Jesus had returned showing himself alive and risen from the grave. He had ascended to heaven to sit at the right hand of the Father. The Holy Spirit had come like a mighty rushing wind. Peter’s chains fell and an angel of the Lord walked him past the guards and out the front door of the prison, the first place he goes is to Mary’s house. Exciting times to be serving the Lord!
We serve the same Lord and we too, live in exciting times. The Lord is moving on the earth, healing people, setting them free, restoring families, rescuing those who are in chains and providing safe havens all over the world.
Here are the questions…what about our homes, are they available as Mary’s was? Are the doors open to receive guests? Do we offer hospitality, prayer, ministry or a safe haven? Do our homes – have God’s heart?
I can imagine what Mary’s home must have been like because I know a few modern-day Mary’s. When I walk into their homes I am greeted with love and a warm embrace. A warm cup of coffee or, a refreshing glass of lemonade is offered. I feel warm, loved and welcomed when I am within their walls.
Their homes have been safe havens for widows and orphans. They are places where believers gather for prayer. The Acts church is happening within their walls. Their Homes ~ Have God’s Heart
What about those of us who struggle with the art of hospitality? Good news! We have the best Teacher! If your heart’s desire is to have a home like Mary, but you don’t have a spacious home, finances are a struggle and there are no servants to be found, you are in fact, the only servant in the house. Join the club! Our Lord is a creative Teacher. He will help us to make space, even if it means inflating an air mattress for an unexpected guest. He will give you creative ideas for meals on a shoe string budget. He is faithful to give us the energy and ability to serve and will even send us someone to help. Is our door open?
Oh… that we will cast our insecurities aside and the doors of our homes, scattered all over the world, will open. Declaring this is a house of hospitality, of prayer, of love, a safe haven. Our Homes ~ With God’s Heart
I felt that I must conclude this post on a practical note – sharing my go to, need a quick dessert, recipe. They are quick, easy, delicious and inexpensive.
Growing up, I remember my parents dining room table often having a circle of friends sitting around it and the coffee flowed. My Mom is one of the best bakers I know and could make something delicious out of very little, here is a taste!
1 Cup Crisco
2 Cups Sugar
½ Cup Coco
1 ½ Cups Flour
2 tsp Vanilla
Mix with mixer: Crisco, Sugar, Eggs, Coco, Salt, Vanilla.
Gradually add in flour. Mix well
Grease a 9 x 13 Pan. Spread mixture evenly.
Bake at 350 for 23 minutes.
3 TBSP Margarine
3 TBSP Coco
1 tsp Vanilla
3 Cups of Powdered Sugar.
Mix in bowl alternating Powdered Sugar and Milk until icing is firm and spreadable.
A side Note: If you would like to forego the icing – just sprinkle with powdered sugar!