"Woman, why are you weeping?" Jn 20:13
Encountering Mary Magdalene weeping outside of Jesus' tomb does not surprise us. Grieving is a natural and necessary part of every life, especially as we grow older. As family members and friends die, we feel the deep loss of not having the people upon whom we relied and with whom we journeyed by our side, and Mary Magdalene is no exception.
Twice Mary is asked why she is weeping, and we wonder if she is annoyed or surprised by the question. Doesn't everyone know that her Lord has died? She answers the angels politely enough by telling them that someone has taken Jesus' body, but only when Jesus calls her by name does Mary lift her head in recognition. Hearing the voice of the one who had turned her life around and taught her the Good News is enough to break through her grief and fill her with hope
Easter is God's promise that the death we fear and wrestle with is not the end. Our life will go on in a form we know not, but which faith assures us will be full of joy and delight. Sensing God's presence in the midst of our grieving or remembering the faces and lives of those who have gone before us is God's way of reminding us that we will never be alone and that someday we will know this promise in its fullness.
Today, weep for a loss but listen for God's love in the midst of your grief.
How do you imagine heaven?