Wednesday Word 4.15.2020

Matthew 28:1-10

28 After the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb. There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. The guards were so afraid of him that they shook and became like dead men.The angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples: ‘He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him.’ Now I have told you.”So the women hurried away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell his disciples. Suddenly Jesus met them. “Greetings,” he said. They came to him, clasped his feet and worshiped him. 10 Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid. Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me.”

The older I get, the more impact Easter has had on me. At first it was new patent leather Mary Janes with matching little handbags and little straw hats. There was always a big basket filled with treats and usually a stuffed animal. I still have the bunny that came from my third Easter. When my mother decided I was too old for an Easter Basket, she gave me my very first “make-up” (just powder, really) in a little compact that looked like a woven basket. As I grew, I came to know that Easter was really about Jesus overcoming death more than it was bunnies and sweet gifts; but the celebration was still so much fun.

As the years went by and I spent more time in the Scriptures, I began to think more about the magnitude of the Holy Week events. The notion that the Son of God would take on my sin and suffer the consequences began to take on a deeper meaning for me. Then in 2004, when a group of us went to see “The Passion of the Christ,” my perspective changed completely. I started thinking about Jesus as a human being, the Son of Man, as well as the Son of God. It stopped being purely spiritual in my mind as I grappled with the physical and emotional consequences of his suffering.

In the last few years, I have thought a lot about those who were close to Jesus, and how they must have felt. What if I was one of those women? How grief-stricken? How terrified by the Angel of the Lord and dumbfounded by what he was saying? And then to run right into the Risen Christ! Try looking at Easter from the different perspectives of those involved. My childhood memories of Easter gifts and festivities are precious to me. As happy as they were, nothing compares with the gifts the Resurrection holds for us all…something to pray about.

Your sister in Christ, Vicki