"I Have Seen the Lord!"
John 20:18 Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, "I have seen the Lord"; and she told them that he had said these things to her.
It was the third day and Jesus had been buried in such a hurry that his body had not been properly prepared. His followers had to wait until after the Sabbath day before they could come and prepare him properly. That's what the women were doing that first Easter morning. They hadn't come to the tomb with any kind of anticipation, but rather, to simply care for Christ's body. They came as soon as they could -- at the first light of dawn on that first day of the week. The women wondered who would roll the stone away from the tomb for them because they knew it was too heavy for them -- but even knowing this, they chose to come and care for their Lord.
It's Mary that has the personal encounter with Jesus that morning. In her tears and the dim morning light, she does not immediately recognize him -- until he simply calls out her name, "Mary." At that moment she knows who he is. He sends her to the rest of his followers to let them know that he is alive. Mary is then ready to share that she had seen the Lord! And from that moment it spread like wildfire - Jesus was alive!
Do we come before the Lord daily in expectation that he truly is alive? Or, do we wake up at the crack of dawn, and come to him, prepared to spend time in his word but not really having an expectation of communing with him. The reality is that just as he was alive on that first Easter Sunday -- so, he is alive today. When we meet with him on a daily basis we discover the joy of knowing a resurrected Christ who wants to commune with us. We are not to come to him with our funeral spices, but rather with our live hearts and a desire to have him so infuse our beings that we are transformed into his image and likeness here on this earth. Jesus is alive -- and therefore I can be alive!
It's a great day -- let's celebrate! Today, and everyday!
Lord, may we live daily in the joy of your resurrection! Amen.