“Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb . . . ” – John 20:1a (NRSV)
“While it was still dark . . . ”
Mary Magdalene had known darkness. She had been possessed by seven demons, a dark time in her life when she struggled in ways we can only imagine. She probably was rejected by her family and friends and the society around her. A dark existence – until Jesus scattered her darkness with the power of his love and grace, exorcising her demons and giving her new life. She became a devoted follower of this Jesus, who was a light to her path.
But the darkness came rushing back on the day Jesus died. What happened? She had thought he was the one! According to Luke it truly got dark that afternoon. The darkness was total hopelessness in the lives of Jesus followers, including Mary. So she decided to go to the tomb, to be in darkness with Jesus both literally and spiritually – to weep – for she couldn’t do anything else. The darkness she once knew so well has returned.
Most of us have experienced darkness in our lives in one way or another. Hope once so bright lost in darkness that seems to overwhelm any light we had.
But now the resurrected Jesus calls out Mary’s name. The light of the resurrection comes streaming into her life and scatters all the darkness! Mary now knows that there is no darkness more powerful than the light of the resurrected Jesus! He lives — and now so does she.
The risen Jesus is light to us all. And so we live in the light that shines forever!
Bringing It Home:
1. Jesus died to scatter the darkness in your life. Hear the voice of Jesus calling your name. There is no darkness in this world that the light of Jesus cannot overcome.
2. Bring your darkness to Jesus Christ and he will light your life now and forever.
Great Light of the World, I am in awe at the power of your resurrection and the light that it shines into my life. I pray that your light would so shine in my life that all the darkness may be chased away and that only you and your light would remain. I pray that I could also not only receive your light in joy, but that I would also learn how best to let your light shine in and through me so that others may receive your light of love and grace. Amen.
John A. Holm
Transforming Church Institute