It's dark outside and the brisk dawn wind gently penetrates through her shawl. Her hand clenched at her chin holding tight not only the corners of her covering but her anticipation also of what's awaiting her. Her other hand holds different spices which effortlessly perfume this lonely and death stenched place. She has not slept properly for a few nights and this last one did not wanted to give up its darkness easy. Her feet gently press on the red earth which shyly shows the innocent blood drops marking the events of the last days. She is not afraid to be alone nor is she hesitant to visit the dead. Her heart is full of sorrow and grief and her mind is totally confused! A thousand thoughts run through her fragile mind looking for reason to cling to!
What happened to the person who showed mercy to her when others unleashed their meanness in full? Someone so precious and dear had suffered such cruelty and died an awful death. The least she could do for him is anoint his body. Her hands shake and her face freezes as she approaches the tomb. The giant stone has been removed from the mouth of the cave and its emptiness is unwelcoming to her! Frazzled and uncertain she drops the spices and runs to find the 'boys'.
'They must know how to help'- she sighs. We must find the Lord's body!"
Not all the boys come though. Who believes a woman hey? She looks tired and scattered, she is having hallucinations perhaps. The Lord died, who can take his body and get contaminated? Why do 'they' need him?
She does not dare to enter the tomb. That kind of room feels unwelcoming to her. She sits and weeps as the boys check for themselves. Now, they are ambiguous too, there is nothing there for them, so silently they walk back home.
But she can't part like that. She must stay and wait. The appearance of angels has scared and amazed all the people that they have appeared to in the past but not her! Not today!
When we are focused on the dead we neglect and don't recognise the supernatural even when that is staring at our face.
The white-robed angels try to talk to her but no, she is too busy and caught up in her worry to listen. Her sadness has taken her to a place of deep anguish that all around and inside her is looking for this one thing - 'the body'. She is trying to figure it out where the body may be or may have been taken to.
Sometimes our mind is so obsessed with this 'one thing' that is not going according to our plans at the moment that we forget to see and notice the wonder that surrounds us.
Weary and disappointed she drags her feet to leave with her head looking towards the shrinking pit. Someone is standing close and is trying to talk to her but she can't concentrate. She has not got time to converse with strangers or even the 'gardener' at this moment. Her eyes bleary and tear-soaked close as she pleads for help one more time! "Have you seen where the body is sir?” she asks. "Tell me"- frantically looking for an answer, and I will go and get him!"
"Who are you looking for?” the gentleman inquires. What is the reason you are still here?
We all need someone to come and challenge our actual state with some deep and searching questions. Why are you here? Whom we are waiting for? How long will we believe the lies that keep us in the same spot and pit?
Finally! A sound so gentle yet so penetrating to her heart shook her being! She was called by her name! "Mary!"
A sound so natural and a common greeting, but not today, not now. Never had a word utterance been as heavy in emotion as this one! The one thing that she thought was lost and gone forever was standing right beside her!
Like Mary we all have had those times when we have felt that the Lord was far and distant, his presence we could not sense. The ruth is just the opposite, when we feel abandon He is right beside us!
"Teacher" - she exclaimed! "I found you; there is no disappearing from me now".
We love to cling to people and experiences that we long waited for and stay like that forever.
But that's not what the Lord expects from Mary. "You have found me and you have found the truth"- he said to the weeping Mary! "Now with eyes overflowing with joy, go and share this message"
In the midst of our darkest moments when the clouds of trials have overshadowed us, our Lord breaks through the thickness of despair and calls us by name. Léa, Sue, Mary, Rosie ..... I am right here, next to you. Please, don't cling to experiences, to people -go and share the light that is shed in you in the midst of darkness around you, go and declare that life has conquered death; the tomb is empty so you can be full of life.
Like Mary the same voice echoes through the deepest part of us all urging "Get moving, leave the pit behind, it's time to arise and shine forth the light and life of the resurrection life.