devotion 4-22-14

Good Morning!

John 20:11-18

11But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb; 12and 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. 13They 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.” 14When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not know that it was Jesus. 15Jesus 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.” 16Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to him in Hebrew, “Rabbouni!” (which means Teacher). 17Jesus 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.’” 18Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord”; and she told them that he had said these things to her.

The disciples saw the empty tomb and returned home – it always seemed a little odd to me that they just went home. But Mary stood there, weeping, and she looked into the tomb. Mary saw the angels there – all that Peter & John had seen was an empty tomb and the linen wrappings. The angels ask Mary why she is weeping, and she replied that she does not know where they have taken Jesus. Even Mary does not understand the meaning of the empty tomb – she assumes grave robbers, and likely the disciples had made that assumption as well. Mary turns around and Jesus is standing there – but her eyes are blinded by tears, and she does not recognize him; she assumes he is the gardener. He asks her why she is weeping, who it is she is looking for, and she gives him the same answer she gave the angels. Finally, he calls her by name, and she recognizes him! She cries out, “Rabboni!” and falls at his feet. In all the gospels, Mary is the first to see the risen Christ. He told her to go tell the disciples – and she went, and said to them, “I have seen the Lord!” What an incredible pronouncement! These were words that changed the world! And each of us, in our own way, encounters the living Christ – and we must also say, “I have seen the Lord!”

The poem continues:

And having seen
the empty tomb,
the disciples go home.

Now doesn’t that
seem a little odd?

They see the
greatest miracle of all time –

And they go home.

They do not run tell everyone,

As Mary did –

They do not praise God,

And run shouting Hosannah

Through the streets

Of Jerusalem –

No, they just go home!

And then, Mary,

She has to look again-

She sees the angels,

But she is still
wrapped up in grief.

She is so focused
on her own need

To find the body –

That she does not recognize

The risen Lord!

She sees Jesus,
and she thinks
he is the gardener!

She so expects
to see death,
that she cannot
see life!

Do we sometimes
become wrapped up
in ourselves?

So much so,
that we cannot see life?

Can we become wrapped
in our own need –
until we cannot see Jesus?

But Jesus does not
leave us there,
Jesus calls our name!

Can we hear him?

Jesus calls Mary, by name –

And she sees who he is!

Jesus calls your name,

And mine –

See – he says, I live!

I died, for you,
and yet I live –
in me, life continues.

Jesus Christ
defeated death,
on that day when he died,

And on that Sunday morning,
in the sunrise,
when he again lived!
and today-
he still lives!

He defeated death,
that we may live!

If we know him,
live in him,
and him in us,
then we live –

We, too, defeat death!

We live with Jesus,
in eternal joy and peace!

Mary did not go home;
she ran and told!

I have seen the Lord!

Have you seen the Lord?

Does he live in your heart?

I have seen him!

I tell you truly –

He lives!

Christ Jesus lives today!

Let us tell someone!

Let us tell the world!

Joyce Alexander


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