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Elmhurst CRC
Monday - Jesus and Mary Magdelene
March 28, 2016 Elmhurst CRC
Welcome to the Elmhurst CRC Devotional Experience. It’s Monday, the second day of Easter week Our scripture reading today comes from John 20:10-18 Then the disciples went back to their homes,but Mary stood outside the tomb crying. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb and saw two angels in white, seated where Jesus’ body had been, one at the head and the other at the foot. They asked her, “Woman, why are you crying?” “They have taken my Lord away,” she said, “and I don’t know where they have put him.” At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus. He asked her, “Woman, why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?” Thinking he was the gardener, she said, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him.” Jesus said to her, “Mary.” She turned toward him and cried out teacher! Jesus said, “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’” Mary Magdalene went to the disciples with the news: “I have seen the Lord!” And she told them that he had said these things to her. Mary had walked with Jesus for some time. She had seen him perform miracles, heard him proclaim the good news of the kingdom of God, wept as he was crucified, and watched as his body was sealed in the tomb. She felt the tremendous loss of him and was devastated that he was gone. Imagine then the emotions that pass through her that morning when she goes to the tomb. Grief over his death. Shock that his body was not in the tomb. Fear at the sight of the angels. Confusion when first seeing Jesus. Unspeakable joy when she realizes it is him. In this joy she reaches out for him. She hangs on to keep him with her, to not lose him again, and perhaps to try and keep things how they were before. But, that is not his plan. He tells her not to hold on to him, that he still needs to go to the Father, that there is more to come. Last week my daughter asked me why Jesus tells Mary not to hold on to him and yet later tells Thomas to touch his hands and side. Why the difference? The difference is that Mary needed to loosen her grip and Thomas needed to strengthen his. Mary was clinging to Him, taking comfort in his strength and that he was back and physically before her. She did not want to let go and she did not want things to change. But, it was time for Mary to realize that things would not stay the same. They could not. It was time for her to walk by faith, time for her to take the time to go and tell the others. To share his story. His love. His light. She did not need to touch him as others did to have faith in who he was. But, she did need faith enough to continue on. She had seen her risen Lord and now needed to release her grip so that she might open her hands and share the good news that Jesus is alive! Jesus, the Light of the World, still shines. Find a dark or dim place nearby. Bring along two sources of light for the 2nd day of our experience. As the light begins to push out the darkness, speak these words: “Out of the darkness of the tomb, the light is shining. Jesus is the light of the world.” If you can, sing a verse of the song, “This Little Light of Mine.”
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