When Jesus died on the cross and his body was taken down to be buried, there was a feeling of despair that spread through out his friends. This is not what they expected. In their minds they envisoned Him on the throne, not the cross. How could it have gone so wrong? The Pharisee's gloated in the tragic death, believing that they had finally put a stop to the disruption that Jesus brought. Finally, they could get back to normal. The disciples were deeply grieved and afraid. They clustered together to discuss all that had taken place, and they were at a loss as to what to do next. They had just spent the last three years with Jesus, following him, believing in His words, and now he was dead! All the hope that had surrounded them was gone, replaced with despair. The day following his death was a day of tears.
When Sunday morning rolled around and Mary went to the tomb, only to find it empty, she must have been somewhat confused. How could this happen? Where was he? Who did this? When she was told by the angels that He was alive, her world became alive as well. I've tried to imagine what this would be like as the truth soaks in and hope rises.
On Saturday, everyone believed a lie. They believed he was gone and it was hopeless.
On Saturday they felt afraid as they clustered themselves away, trapped in pain, confusion, and despair.
On Saturday they had so many questions, doubts, and tears, hope was gone.
And then it was Sunday.
Mary saw him, but she didn't know it was him until he tenderly spoke to her. The pain of Saturday was no longer an issue, for all her hope was alive, vibrant, and standing in front of her. She realized that she had believed a lie, and now truth was there to give her freedom.
The disciples had the same experience. They ran to see if the tomb was really empty, and yes, indeed it was! They were full of wonderment, questions, and excitement. They still clustered together all of them talking at once, letting logic tell them that someone had stolen the body. But then, Jesus joined them. He walked right in and asked for food. He crushed all doubt, fear, pain, and despair. He gave them truth, so the lies they were believing could no longer thrive. He gave them hope.
This is what we have too, HOPE. When we fall into the trap of lies it feels the same way as the disciples felt. So much pain, despair, hoplessness. When we bring it to Jesus and hear him speak to our pain, He crushes the lies. It may look different than we imagine, we may have a struggle believing that he is actually truth, but when it happens we have incredible and complete freedom from the tomb.
When hope rises, we are able to run and tell others. When hope rises the fear and lies are crushed. When hope rises there is peace.
Praying today that this Easter brings you great hope!