Saturday, April 23, 2011

John 20 - He Picks the Girl

The various individuals in Jesus' life must have had different reactions to His death, beyond grief.  That topic has occupied my mind this week.  What did His loss mean to them personally?  What did His return hold for each of them?

Mary Magdalene had been healed of seven demons by Jesus.  She was one of the ones standing by His cross, and she is now coming early to the tomb, in the dark.  I am not sure how kosher it was for a woman to travel in the dark; but she, (and a couple of other ladies - referenced from the other gospels), made that trek a priority.  The goal to anoint her Healer and Savior's body for burial.  

Who else was Jesus to Mary Magdalene?  The first person to accept her, honor her, consider her?  The first man to treat her with dignity and respect?  The first person to demonstrate love, mercy, grace towards her?  The first person in whom she could really trust?  Her first true friend?  Her introduction to society?  Her promise of purpose?  One to whom she was already inconceivably indebted?  Her actions indicate He was her priority.

As I contemplate these thoughts, I see that the disciples leave the tomb and Mary is left standing, weeping.  Through her tears and grief she looks in the tomb and meets two angels.  She does not receive the standard supernatural greeting, "Do not be afraid."   Wonder why?  Was she so far into the grief that she didn't care about her own safety?  Was Jesus so significant to her that nothing compared to Him?  

Mary next encounters her Lord Jesus.  

Why Mary Magdalene and not the men?  Why the one who had desperately needed to be healed and not the ones who had followed Him with invitation? Why the one who experienced His miracles rather than the ones who were experiencing His ministry?  Was there something in her grief, her lingering, her waiting before the last place her Lord had been ... -that gave her eyes to see what the others had not?  -that displayed her heart's love so irresistibly that Christ stepped from the spiritual into the physical just to meet her at her place of greatest need?  -that demonstrated her brokenness and desperation for Him that He came to her?  She saw Him, the others did not.

Sweet Redeemer, may I never be so overcome with the details of an event that I miss You.  Please help me to linger in Your presence that I may receive all that You have for me today.  Don't let me hurry away from where You have desired to meet me.  I am so encouraged that You chose to reveal Yourself to Mary Magdalene before the in-crowd.  I praise You that You see the heart and know the desires of each one.  I thank You that You are what I am seeking, what I need and more than enough in any situation.  Thank You for all that You are to me, Redeemer, Lord, Healer, Savior, God, and infinitely More ...  Please help me to have a heart more like Mary Magdalene's and to be more grateful to You in each aspect of Who You are for me.  I am so amazed, You picked the girl.  Thank You for that.

Luke 7:47 "For this reason I say to you, her sins, which are many, have been forgiven, for she loved much ; but he who is forgiven little, loves little."

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