Today’s Reading: John 20:10-13 (NIV)
10 Then the disciples went back to their homes, 11 but Mary stood outside the tomb crying. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb 12 and saw two angels in white, seated where Jesus’ body had been, one at the head and the other at the foot. 13 They asked her, “Woman, why are you crying?”
Last night, I was on the phone with my daughter Rachel, and I could hear my young granddaughter Emily burst into tears. Rachel put the telephone down and went to comfort her daughter. “Emily, what’s wrong?” I heard Rachel say. What followed next was a combination of slurred speech and sobs from a broken-hearted little girl. Sometimes we have trouble communicating when we are overcome with emotion. I imagine Mary was feeling overwhelmed when the angels asked her why she was crying at the tomb.
Have you ever been overcome with emotion?
I remember standing alone at my father’s casket about an hour before his scheduled funeral. Daddy had passed quite suddenly and unexpectedly. There were some things left to say, and even though I knew he was physically no longer there, I felt the need to express myself. I knew that God would hear and understand the words I spoke, even if no one else did. I think I sounded a lot like little Emily, sobbing and sputtering words that probably only made sense to me and the Lord. When we say goodbye to the people who have impacted our lives in a profound way, it is a painful thing to do. As I reflect on that day many years ago, I realize that God gave me His special gift of tears to help me in expressing what simple words cannot. My swollen red nose and teary, weepy eyes were a priceless gift from the Father above, and I can be grateful even in times of sadness and despair.
The disciples had left Mary alone to her grief. Men seem to have a hard time with tears, especially when the one who is grieving means so very much to them. Mary stood there – but she was not alone. The Lord sent two angels to comfort her broken heart; a priceless gift she cherished for the rest of her life. Although I did not physically see or speak with angels on the day my father died, I have no doubt they were there, surrounding our family with Christ’s peace that passes all human understanding.
The next time grief grips your heart, and you find yourself blubbering between sobs, remember that you are not alone. Jesus Christ is standing right beside you. He will send His angels to guard and protect you especially in your most vulnerable moments, offering comfort in ways you cannot begin to imagine or understand. You can run today into the Father’s open arms where He will hold you as you have your heavenly cry out. May you experience Christ’s priceless peace when you have a broken heart..
Grace and peace,
Faith UMC - St. Charles, MO
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