My favorite account of the resurrection is found in John 20:1-3, 11-16 which reads:
“Now, on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early, while it was still dark and saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb. So she ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved (who was John), and said to them, ‘They have taken the Lord out of the tomb and we do not know where they have laid him. So Peter went out with the other disciple and they were going toward the tomb.
11…But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb, and as she wept she stooped to look into the tomb. And she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had lain, one at the head and one at the feet. They 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.’ Having said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing, but she did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, ‘Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?’ 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.’ Jesus said to her, ‘Mary.’ She turned and said to him in Aramaic, ‘Rabboni!’ (which means Teacher).”
Oh imagine getting to be Mary Magdalene and being so close with the Lord. To have been comforted by him and spoke with him and loved him while he was on earth. The affection she must have been able to have for our Lord is such a precious thing.
I can only imagine losing someone so special and close to me who I have such trust in and affection for and to stand weeping where they once laid, begging for them to be returned so I could properly bury them, rather than having them lay in a random place by stranger’s hands.
Jesus must have been so precious to Mary.
But here’s where the waterworks become gysers, Jesus sees her despair and he gently looks at her and says her name, as if to announce it is him and ask her to realize that he hadn’t abandoned her. As if to make a connection with her and to slow her anxious thoughts and to still her. He calls to her heart by her name.
Think of that. The one you love saying your name so gently as you stand weeping before them. That is like a sweet lift of the chin. It’s acknowledging and reassuring. “I’m here and I know you. It’s me; the one who has affection for you; who is close to you and knows you. Here I am, Mary.”
Jesus was so gentle with her. He was gentle with all women.
Anyone who says that God hates women has never taken a good look at Jesus’ ministry, because Jesus had the softest heart for even the most rejected women. The ‘unpleasant’ ones, the prostitutes, the diseased who no one would touch. Women were a large part of Jesus ministry and his heart. And, He revealed himself first to a woman.
The men may have bent over and looked into the tomb, but Mary Magdalene, the one who wept for her Lord, is the one he came and tenderly met and comforted.
He saw her grieving affection and his heart went out to her. The angels didn’t even meet the men. The angels were only in the tomb when Mary went there after she had retrieved Peter and John to show them and they went back home, confused.
Jesus is close to the broken hearted and near those who are crushed in Spirit.
Jesus was someone who Mary trusted; she regarded him as the highest authority and was among the very first few in the whole world to believe he was the Christ–the Son of God–long before he was crucified.
I can only imagine being able to be this close to my Lord to have such a close relationship with him. To hear his voice; to be able to turn to him like that.
I can’t imagine the excitement and relief and comfort and love she felt when she realized that there he was, standing before her in the garden, meeting her–revealing himself first to her–to let her weeping and discouraged heart know, “I am here, tender heart.”
What a picture of affection.
This is love. This is Jesus love.
And in the midst of your storm and hopelessness and discouragement and pain and heartache, there he is calling your name and lifting your chin.
Embrace our beautiful Lord, oh what comfort this would be! Let him near to your heart, for this connection is precious and a relationship with him is priceless. I can only imagine how special it must have been to Mary Magdalene, but soon we will meet our Lord and get to join those who came before and saw him!
I’d really like to meet Mary Magdalene; she had such a special heart for our Lord. Oh to have felt the weight of that weeping and affection. What a special thing to have gotten to weep over our Lord with a heart full of love for him. She had such an precious place in history, to be the one who wept so tenderly for our Lord who she was so close to.
She had such a tender and believing heart. One day, we will be close with our Lord again. Until then, let us not forget to ask him near and live as though he walks with us, because he guides us from heaven and is ever-near. He isn’t a far away, aloof thing. He isn’t an idea. He is real, alive, and watching over you. You.
Answer the whisper of your name. He is always calling you near. And soon, we will be with him.
Let our hearts be tender for our Lord as Mary’s special heart was.
Happy Blessed Easter 🌼🥚🐣🐇
Today’s worship songs are:
“Somebody Loves You” by Plumb
“Till I Met You” by Laura Story
and “How Far” by Tasha Layton