Dear Friends of Second Church,
“And very early on the first day of the week they went to the tomb when the sun had risen.”
Whenever I get up just before dawn, I think of the women on that first Easter, rising to play their role in what seemed like the end of the story.
Many people forget the surprising detail that, in Mark’s telling, the women are greeted at the tomb by an angel, and that they don’t react with wonder and joy: in fact, they run away terrified and tell no one what they have seen.
I love them for that. It’s so human. And if we’re honest, we know that when new life beckons us, we don’t always respond at first with wonder and joy, either.
God’s purposes can have a way of over-ruling a lot more than we expect or hope, and sometimes it takes a while to adjust to God’s new reality for us, even when it’s grace-filled.
The women at the tomb that morning were only the first to experience something that Christians have had to learn time and time again.
If you think about it, Easter should be a lot to adjust to.
And not just that first one, way back when: every Easter ought to take something out of us, because it was on this day more than any other that God reached down to put something into us: a new heart, a new destiny, a new life in Christ that meant a new life of love and service we would be expected to grow into. Living into that takes everything we have to give and more.
But it gives us more than we could ever ask or imagine.
I still have a lot of growing to do. And yet, every year on Easter, I am reminded of the joy I find along the way, and my gratitude for finding the new things God is asking me to become a part of, and to help as best I can.
Wherever you will be this Sunday, I hope you will find your heart warmed by the presence of those you love, and lifted by the vision of the God who makes all things new.