Day 8: Jesus is Resurrected!

by Apr 17, 2022Devotional, Easter 2022, Journey of the Cross

Matthew 28:1-10 (ESV)

Now after the Sabbath, toward the dawn of the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb. And behold, there was a great earthquake, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow. And for fear of him the guards trembled and became like dead men. But the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here, for he has risen, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and behold, he is going before you to Galilee; there you will see him. See, I have told you.” 

So they departed quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, and ran to tell his disciples. And behold, Jesus met them and said, “Greetings!” And they came up and took hold of his feet and worshiped him. Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see me.”

It’s 2 am and I’ve been jolted awake from one of those dreams that feels so real it’s hard to shake. I had just been falling from a tall building and now, for a moment, I’m caught between my dream world and the real world. I’m awake but disoriented. It still feels as if gravity is wrenching me to the ground. I feel the blankets covering me, listen to the soothing hum of my white-noise machine, and reach out for my phone to check the time – searching for anything that will connect my mind and body back to reality. 

The journey of the cross was a nightmare for those who witnessed it first-hand, but one they couldn’t wake up from. To find their footing in this new world, the women who followed Jesus from trial to tomb returned to one thing that made sense: serving Jesus. After the Sabbath, they made their way to His grave to anoint His buried body with the sweet perfume they carefully prepared for Him.

Instead of finding Jesus enclosed by a giant stone and covered in a linen shroud, they saw an angel sitting near the now open and emptied tomb who announced, “He is not here, for he is risen, as he said.” Like an alarm clock that gradually pulls us out of a deep sleep, the Good News was beginning to pull them from a bad dream. As they stood there, disoriented by all they have witnessed, the angel instructs them to find the disciples. 

While they made their way back from the tomb, still suspended between disbelief and joy, Jesus appeared to the women on the road. As if to connect their body and minds to this glorious reality, they fell to the ground, clinging to the feet of Jesus. Nearly 2000 years later, it’s easy to forget that the same comfort and security the women felt at the feet of Jesus is still on offer to us today. 

As we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus, we reorient ourselves to our eternal reality – the grave has been defeated, death has lost its sting. When we feel lost, when the world feels too large and uncertain, Easter serves as a resounding alarm in which we reawaken to our King who is seated on His throne with glory and power. Our faith is not some dream, but a secure foundation upon which we can stand stronger every day. For He is risen. He is risen indeed!

Day 6: Jesus Dies

Mark 15:33-35 (ESV) And when the sixth hour had come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour. And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?” which means, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” And some of...

A Hallelujah Holiday

Keeping the Savior at the CenterWhen many of us think Easter, egg hunts and chocolate bunnies immediately come to mind. True, many of today’s Easter festivities focus more around the coming of spring than the resurrection of our Savior, but the heart of the holiday...