Summary: The experiences and reactions of the women on Easter Sunday morn, in many ways mirror our reaction to the New Day that has come through Jesus’ resurrection.
Walkin’ with Jesus:
The Dawn of a New Day
Scripture Text: Mark 16.1-8
The Easter story is an amazing and moving-story ~ …but not-just-because it touches us emotionally. But, it’s incredible and powerful because it really did happen; …and-because of what-those-events tell us about God’s-heart and God’s-intentions toward each one of us!
Every one of the Gospel stories tells that the first visitors to the tomb came very early… At dawn. Maybe-even leaving their home before the first rays of sunlight had peaked over the horizon. Mark says-as-much. It’s very early.
This morning, some of us got up at the crack-of-dawn to gather for a sunrise service. We weren’t the only ones. Many believers, around the world, stepped into the shoes-of-those-women who went to tomb.
That-day began in darkness. It began with a cloud-of-grief, hangin-low in their hearts. It began with what seemed-to-be a continuation of the way things-have-always-been. “We get our hopes up; “…We think that things are gonna be better; “…We think that maybe, just-maybe, God has sent us some help.”
But-then, we end-up disappointed. We end-up on the dark-side of the next-day, …a day that is just-like-every-other day. Filled with broken-hearts, …and shattered-dreams, …despair over the future, …filled with regrets over what ‘woulda-been, shoulda-been, I wish it was’!
The women got up early. Their hearts were heavy. Their minds clouded with grief and disappointment. The smile of their Friend, …the compassion of His words, …the light that emanated from His eyes ~ …It was all extinguished a few-days-earlier, as Jesus breathed His last, …hanging on the executioner’s cross, …and He said, “It is finished!”
“Finished”, all-right! Finished hopes. Finished dreams. Finished relationships. Finished!
Can you imagine the heaviness of their footsteps as they made-their-way through the dark, empty streets of Jerusalem? I wonder if they walked past the Temple ~ …the place where the curtain was ripped from top-to-bottom the same-day that Jesus died! I wonder if they walked past the city-gate where Jesus rode on a donkey, while all the people shouted, “Hosanna!” I wonder if they thought of His words, “I am the light of the world” ~ …even as the sun’s-first-rays peaked over the distant horizon. Can you imagine the tangled-web of fleeting thoughts and memories streaming through their minds as they shuffled-along early on Sunday morning? Did they talk, or just move-along in silence? Did tears hang on the rims of their lids, …or were they wiping the sleep from tired eyes?
Whatever-their-posture, …whatever-their-thoughts, …whatever-their-physical-state, …they mustered one-question… After they bought the burial-spices from merchant who’d set up shop especially-early that morning, …as they drew-near to the tomb, …they wondered out-loud: “Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?”