Happy Easter Monday! “Our God, we thank you for being so near to us! Everyone celebrates your wonderful deeds.” (Psalm 75:1, CEV)
The nearness of our Lord Jesus Christ is eternal! The Resurrection of Jesus assures us our hope is built upon Him and shall never fail. This hope is not only for the confident, but the weak, the infirm, the frightened, to all who trust in Christ.
If Jesus was not who He claimed then we would be most miserable. If He were not resurrected then we would be hopeless. There was a woman who knew this! Her name was Mary Magdalene. She was the dear woman that Jesus set free from demonic oppression; casting them out of her life, giving her a brand new life!
She knew what it was to be terrified by the presence of evil that she couldn’t explain. She knew the horrors of a life controlled by demonic oppression, the voices, the long nights of torment and decisions she made but could not understand. Then Jesus drew near! He wasn’t ashamed of her or her struggles. Jesus changed all of that in an instant. The smile, the change in her life, now surrendered to the Lord of love, peace and joy!
She was there when he was brutally crucified. She saw him die at Calvary. Like the disciples she didn’t understand that he was dying for her sin but He would rise again! Suddenly He didn’t seem so near. (But oh Mary, he died for you and me. You knew that long before I did.)
In her anguish, her hope was gone, and she came to anoint a corpse with spices. One final act of love for Him. Did she wonder, “will the demons return, will the voices return, will the uncontrollable behavior be my life again?”
When Mary Magdalene came to the tomb she was stunned to find it empty. Weeping she peered in, two angels asked, “Dear woman, why are you crying?” Perhaps she never imagined the angels could be so near. However someone greater than angels was near.
In a few minutes Jesus drew near and asked her the same question. “Why are you crying?” She recognized his voice when He spoke her name, “Mary.” Hearing her name spoken by Jesus filled her as the Bible says, with “great joy.” He knows her name, my name, your name!
Perhaps you’re going through a struggle, or you are frightened and the full meaning of Easter has not filled your heart. Jesus will listen, He is near. He will ask you, “Why are you crying?” And as He knew who Mary was, He knows who you are! He can and will give you a new life, filled with hope. The confident assurance that God has something good for you now and forevermore! He is near!