Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the tomb. So she ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him.” Then Peter and the other disciple set out and went toward the tomb. The two were running together, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. He bent down to look in and saw the linen wrappings lying there, but he did not go in. Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb. He saw the linen wrappings lying there, and the cloth that had been on Jesus’ head, not lying with the linen wrappings but rolled up in a place by itself. Then the other disciple, who reached the tomb first, also went in, and he saw and believed; for as yet they did not understand the scripture, that he must rise from the dead. Then the disciples returned to their homes. But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb; and she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had been lying, one at the head and the other at the feet. They said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?” She said to them, “They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid him.” When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you looking for?” Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.” Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to him in Hebrew, “Rabbouni!” (which means Teacher). Jesus said to her, “Do not hold on to me, because I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and say to them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.'” Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord”; and she told them that he had said these things to her. [NRSA: John 20:1-18]
The response of Disciples
- All we afraid and experiencing grief.
- Some went focused on the matters of the burial.
- Some telling unbelievable stories.
- Some running toward belief
- Some looking for proof
- Some not understanding the scriptures.
- Some returned to their homes.
- Some weeping and waiting.
the perfect time for salvation is in the moment of being most aware we are broken, unbelieving, afraid, dead, running, seeking, not understanding, at home, hiding, and weeping, for then we were MOST AWARE of our weakness, brokenness, and inability to bring order to the chaos.
What are you doing this Easter?
In celebration of the greatest event of faith in human history since creation itself, what we doing right now?
Most of the world are not gathered to worship and celebrate the Resurrection. Not only because we have not all thawed from the precautions of pandemic, while the world is connected in communications as never before, most are not celebration a living God, with the power to order chaos, fix and redeem all that is broken, heal and restore life to the dead. Billions are devoted to other ideas, faiths, rationalized explanation, or simple apathy and a lack of concern or fear of acknowledging the emptiness they experience in their own world perspectives.
As a nation, we have taken for granted the opportunity of being a nation, that seeks God’s heart and have become an adolescent majority that believe they know more than any God, have answers for every questions without the need for faith, mystery, and believe their own understanding of “Love” can be derived from a self-determined moral ascent of thought for some lowest common denominator of goodness.
My rambling point is that the world continues to settle for emptiness, grief, proof, weeping, waring, and the dismissive returning home in retreat.
The state of the News of Resurrection and Worldview are very similar, then and now. If someone tells you the Post Easter experience is different now, 2000 years after the stone was first rolled away and God’s divine work of restoring a broken creation is so modern, different, and detached… the truth is, we are extremely near to the same response.
Where is the Hope?
The home comes when Jesus speaks to those who are waiting and searching.
The 12 were not at the tomb ready to celebrate and sing, “Christ the Lord is Risen Today!” They were at home. For those who were willing to search and listen for the voice of witnesses, angels, and the voice of Christ, find the power, truth, and life the risen Lord have given us.
- For Mary who goes to tell others,
- For Peter and John who run to see,
- For Mary who remains to see and hear, Jesus speaks to her, by name,
- Her response is identifying with Jesus as teacher.
We are the students
- Students know they have more to learn.
- Student have respect to know where to seek answers and direction.
- Students listen, follow, and trust the Teacher’s instruction.
These are what we are modeled this Easter, and every day.
- Confess we do not know it all,
- we do not have all the answers,
- But, We know who to trust
- We know who to follow,
- What know what to model,
- We know we are to also tell, lead, and share with others,
- We know the world needs what God has done and is doing through Jesus, the Risen Lord!
The simple task for Easter Sunday 2021 is to
- Affirm or reaffirm our faith in Jesus Christ, risen for us personally, and for the world, the broken sin filled self-absorbed world, and
- To Claim the task of being the messengers
- Sent and empowered by Christ.
- To witness what we have seen, heard,
- To share what we believe and trust,
- To live the eternal life of love and peace that has been given to us.
- Until every knee bow and every tongue join our praise and celebration.
Let’s get busy!!