Another “least likely” from last week is Joanna. She is part of the group of women that followed Jesus closely.
Why is she a least likely? She was the wife of Chuza, Herod’s steward. The steward is like the house manager, so he would have controlled Herod’s money. When the Bible says she financially supported Jesus and His disciples, the funds are coming right from Herod’s treasury. I love the irony! Herod’s vast administration, bent on denying Jesus and thwarting His ministry, was being used by God.
All things belong to God and He can use anything for His purpose, however unlikely. Maybe God’s sense of humor was in play as He provided for Jesus. Perhaps God chuckled when Herod found out, although I’m sure Herod didn’t! (Tradition says Chuza eventually lost his job because of Joanna’s witness in the palace).
According to Luke, Jesus had healed Joanna. Her close relationship is seen in her presence at the cross; she was involved in preparing His body and was one of the first to gloriously announce His resurrection.
Joanna must have been fearless to follow Jesus so openly in front of Herod. It’s possible she may even have influenced some within Herod’s household towards God. We find in Acts 13 another palace member, Manaean, who followed Jesus. Could Joanna have been influential in his conversion?
God is at work all around in surprising ways. His glory is on display as His will is accomplished in the least likely people in the least likely places.