We will begin our worship services on Easter Sunday with this familiar call and response. This is a season of celebration as we all make our way to the empty tomb, and we wonder what resurrection means in the age of COVID19. I am in awe of Mary Magdalene who travels to the grave in the early morning hours of that day of days. Seeing the stone rolled away, she returns to the disciples to tell them about this incredible new development. Mary was the first missionary of the resurrection, telling others there was something special going on in the graveyard. She did not completely grasp the significance of the moment on her first visit to the tomb, so, she returns again and soon encounters the risen Jesus. He calls her by name, and through tear-soaked eyes, she recognizes her risen . Jesus tells her she cannot remain at the open tomb holding on to him; she must go and tell the others what she has seen.
The scripture seems to tell us we must all make our way back to the tomb in our own lives, but we cannot stay there. Jesus is risen, and we still have work to do. This is the greatest story ever told, and we have to share the good news with others; Jesus is alive! I guarantee there is someone in your life who needs to hear this wonderful truth this week.
I appreciate this prayer from the Church of Scotland and hope it is a blessing to you throughout this Easter season. He is Risen.
“Lord Jesus Christ, we greet you. The cross has not defeated you, the grave has not kept you silent. At the first dew of the morning, you met our sister, Mary, and called her by name. We are your family and friends, and though numbed by your death and aware of our complicity in it, We come hesitantly but gladly, to confirm the rumor that you are alive. Meet us as you met Mary, with gentleness and resolution. Speak our names quietly in our hearts, that we may proclaim your name boldly on our lips. Amen.”Common Order (1994), 440-41. Copyright Panel on Worship, Church of Scotland.
In Hope and Confidence,