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“Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here, He has risen. He is alive.”
It was a morning like no other when the women approached the tomb of Jesus. They had come to prepare his dead body, they didn’t expect what waited for them when they arrived. On that morning they encountered an angel who told them the good news, the Messiah had risen from the dead.
These women and the disciples of Jesus walked and lived with Him, the Son of God for years. They had seen all the miracles, they had heard all the teachings, and they loved Him and knew Him well. But when Jesus was crucified they left defeated. There was no hope for a resurrection there was no site of restoration to come. Did they feel misguided? Did they feel like fools? Were any of them holding out on the hope that Jesus had more for them than the grave?
It is easy to look at the Easter story and forget the middle. To forget the hours that felt like days in the wake of the death of Jesus before He came back, defeating death. I imagine that the time before the resurrection felt so dark, I can only imagine feeling lost. With the advantage point of looking at the gospel post-resurrection, it is easy to wonder how the disciples didn’t have hope. They had seen Jesus resurrect Lazarus surly they didn’t think the story was over? How could they have spent so much time following Jesus and not have hope? Hadn’t He proven Himself as the Son of God?
It is easy to think all those things within hindsight. But how long have we walked with Jesus and yet, when there seems to be no hope in sight we forget all He has done for us? We know that life is hard, as humans we are constantly encountering trials that seem to outweigh all our hope. But may we be encouraged that restoration is on its way. It might not come today, it might not come on this side of eternity but let us remember how Jesus beat death. As we celebrate Easter and Good Friday let’s not forget the desperation and the waiting in-between. It is an important part of the story, it is our story. Let us continue to hold onto the hope of Jesus for the restoration to begin.