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Summary: Sunrise Service

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2016 Easter Sunrise service

Over the years I have looked at many Sunrises

In many locations

I remember looking at the sunrise on cold or cool mornings as we pushed cattle towards the pens to begin our annual shipment of calves

The steam rising off the land

Smoke seemed to flow from the noses of the cattle and horses

Gloves on our hands for warmth

Jacket collar pulled up

And then

The sun begins to warm the land and the air

Bringing with it a new day

Or sitting in a boat on the gulf coast

Watching for tailing redfish

Waiting for it to get light enough to see the spotted tails waving

Sun rises

In a duck blind on ht banks of a trout stream, or on the side of a mountain hunting elk

Waiting patiently for the sun

Waiting for what the day will bring

Excitement

Adventure

I also can remember other sunrises and other emotions

Cleaning up the wreckage of a house fire of bad wreck

Seeing the sun come up

Seeing in the light the destruction

The loss of life and property

Other sunrises bring different memories

The day after my dad’s death

Unable to sleep

Up at the crack of dawn

Thinking

Remembering

Asking why

Sun rises bring many emotions to the surface for me

And I have no doubt as you look back at the sunrises of your life

Your stories although different from mine

Share a familiarity

Times of excitement

Times of disappointment

Times of elation

And times of despair

Sun rises

Seems to hold the ability

To get us thinking about the past- Remembering

Thinking about the present- Meditating

Or thinking about the future – Contemplating

Some 2000 years ago

There was a Sunrise

I have no doubt it was similar in appearance to this one

And I know

It brought with it many emotions

Let me read for you from God’s word

The account of this special sun rise

John 20:1-18

0 Early on Sunday morning,[a] while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and found that the stone had been rolled away from the entrance. 2 She ran and found Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved. She said, “They have taken the Lord’s body out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put him!”

3 Peter and the other disciple started out for the tomb. 4 They were both running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. 5 He stooped and looked in and saw the linen wrappings lying there, but he didn’t go in. 6 Then Simon Peter arrived and went inside. He also noticed the linen wrappings lying there, 7 while the cloth that had covered Jesus’ head was folded up and lying apart from the other wrappings. 8 Then the disciple who had reached the tomb first also went in, and he saw and believed— 9 for until then they still hadn’t understood the Scriptures that said Jesus must rise from the dead. 10 Then they went home.

Jesus Appears to Mary Magdalene

11 Mary was standing outside the tomb crying, and as she wept, she stooped and looked in. 12 She saw two white-robed angels, one sitting at the head and the other at the foot of the place where the body of Jesus had been lying. 13 “Dear woman, why are you crying?” the angels asked her.

“Because they have taken away my Lord,” she replied, “and I don’t know where they have put him.”

14 She turned to leave and saw someone standing there. It was Jesus, but she didn’t recognize him. 15 “Dear woman, why are you crying?” Jesus asked her. “Who are you looking for?”

She thought he was the gardener. “Sir,” she said, “if you have taken him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will go and get him.”

16 “Mary!” Jesus said.

She turned to him and cried out, “Rabboni!” (which is Hebrew for “Teacher”).

17 “Don’t cling to me,” Jesus said, “for I haven’t yet ascended to the Father. But go find my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’”

18 Mary Magdalene found the disciples and told them, “I have seen the Lord!” Then she gave them his message.

In this passage of scripture

On this sunrise so long age

Mary like we often do

Is experiencing

A wide range of emotions

Sorrow

Fear

Anger

Disappointment

She watched as Jesus was tried

She watched as he was abused

She watched as he was beaten

She watched as he died

She had been there when he said

“ It is finished”

And now on this cool morning so long ago

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