Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of October 21, 2012
- Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of October 21, 2012
As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho Press,
here is a selection from our book of daily devotions,
"Living as the Beloved: One Day at a Time," by the
Rev. Dr. Sandra Bochonok.
Please read the Scripture passage and Dr. Bochonok's
meditation. We hope you will be blessed. Thank you
for forwarding this to your friends.
Go and tell!
"After the sabbath, as the first day of the week was
dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to
see the tomb. And suddenly there was a great earth-
quake; for an angel of the Lord, descending from
heaven, came and rolled back the stone and sat on it.
The angel's appearance was like lightning, and his
clothing white as snow. For fear of him the guards
shook and became like dead men. But the angel said
to the women, 'Do not be afraid; I know that you are
looking for Jesus who was crucified. He is not here;
for he has been raised, as he said. Come, see the
place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his
disciples, "He has been raised from the dead, and
indeed he is going ahead of you to Galilee; there
you will see him." This is my message for you.'"
The first evangelists were women who had courageously
served Jesus Christ while he was alive. These brave
souls had refused to leave him as he painfully died
on the cross and risked their lives in their public
identification with him. These loyal women had even
followed the body of Jesus to the borrowed tomb where
he was so hastily buried before their Sabbath. They
were reluctant to leave him even in death.
At dawn on the third day, these faithful women had
hurried to the gravesite with what they believed
would be their final act of love and devotion. Their
plan was to anoint the body with burial spices. Who
would roll away the enormous stone that blocked the
entrance to the borrowed tomb? Even with their
combined strength, the huge boulder would be far
too heavy for them to budge. The two determined
Marys stepped out in the faith they had; trusting
God would help them in their great need for physical
assistance. Although it seemed highly unlikely,
perhaps the Roman guards at the gravesite might take
pity on them and lend their brute strength, if only
for a moment.
The women never expected to find the heavily armed
guards unconscious. What the guards had seen was too
fearful to bear for even the bravest and strongest
professional soldiers among them. As the women
tentatively approached the chaotic scene, littered
with rubble from the earthquake and limp soldiers
on the ground like rag dolls, they saw a dazzling
angel. His clothes were more brilliant than snow.
As the women gasped in shock and amazement, the angel
spoke reassuring words to them; they could scarcely
believe their eyes and ears. The tomb was empty.
Jesus was not there. The angel joyously proclaimed
Christ was risen. Death was conquered. The trembling
and terrified women were ordered to go and tell the
inner circle of disciples that Jesus was alive and
planned to meet them in Galilee.
As one reads the other Gospel accounts of this universe-
shattering event, while details may vary, the message
is basically the same. Jesus was alive. Death could
not hold him in the borrowed tomb. The world would
never again be the same.
Perhaps we should all tremble in holy awe and fear as
we grapple with the enormous significance of this event
and what it means for us. Today's story offers many
lessons. Through the risen Christ, we have all
received a divine message of hope that must be shared
with others. Share that hope through word and deed.
Death no longer has victory over our lives. There is
life beyond the grave. From the very beginning of the
resurrection, God broke traditional gender barriers
and cultural role stereotypes by using women to share
spiritual truth through egalitarian leadership roles
with men. Do not be afraid, for God is willing and
eager to use you too. It matters not if you are gay
or straight, male or female, partnered or single, young
or old. Go and tell!
God, thank you for this message of hope and resurrection.
Open our eyes to new life in Christ. Help us as we share
our faith in Jesus Christ to others in word and deed.
Grace and peace,
Chi Rho Press
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