Sunday, 5 April 2015

Amazing Grace

Mark 16:1-8
When the sabbath was over, Mary of Magdala, Mary the mother of James, and Salome, bought spices with which to go and anoint him. And very early in the morning on the first day of the week they went to the tomb, just as the sun was rising.
They had been saying to one another, ‘Who will roll away the stone for us from the entrance to the tomb?’ But when they looked they could see that the stone – which was very big – had already been rolled back. On entering the tomb they saw a young man in a white robe seated on the right-hand side, and they were struck with amazement. But he said to them, ‘There is no need for alarm. You are looking for Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified: he has risen, he is not here. See, here is the place where they laid him. But you must go and tell his disciples and Peter, “He is going before you to Galilee; it is there you will see him, just as he told you.”’

There is such a quietness to Mark's Resurrection; the natural dawn - no special star or eclipse. The stone rolled away - not blasted. The God of the weak, the unwanted, the unclean, the unworthy still will not put himself above us. He is, even more so, where we are. Jesus simply came back as he left - with the humility of a servant - and he went home.

The women, faithful disciples, follow the traditions of family and community. The desire to blend their grief with love opens them up to beginnings of healing. The pragmatic concerns of how to carry out their task a counterpoint to  their regret that it had ever happened. Of course they are amazed. Who would have ever believed that life goes on?

Resurrection is seen in the willingness to begin again when hope is lost.  Jesus,  lifted from the pain, persecution and betrayal of his human life, experiences his Father's creative grace for himself. His journey to Galilee is a reasurrance and an invitation. It is the courage to seek hope out again that creates new life in us all. It is a faith found at the graveside, the sickbed, in the pacing floors of three am worries. It is not easy. It is the open hand, the welcoming hearth, the noticing gaze. It is a movement of the heart that draws the person out of darkness. It is the gift of discipleship. 

The witness of Mark places us in the distress and confusion of the mourner. The man in white is no angelic messenger. He could be any one of us. A still light in the darkness, a steadying hand, a calming voice, a guide to the place where love has made its home. 



1 comment:

Lynda said...

Beautiful inspiration that you have shared!