Jesus stands outside his friend’s grave and weeps. It’s about a week before that first Easter. Death is as offensive and final as it has ever been and Jesus is preparing to do battle.
There have been a number of zombie movies recently, including a zombie love story. The living dead walk the earth, what can bring them back to life?
Jesus stands outside the grave of Lazarus and invites the dead man to walk out!
Lazarus gets up and walks out, still covered in his grave clothes. This would have been terrifying, a dead man walking. I imagine it like one of those zombie films. Except this guy is no longer dead.
One week later, on the first Easter Sunday, Mary stands outside another grave and weeps. Jesus in whom everyone’s hopes had been placed is dead and to make matters worse she can’t find his body. He had been lying dead in a borrowed tomb. He who raised others to life had been defeated by death. It looks like death had won. Mary weeps.
But she weeps in a garden. It was in a garden that death had first entered human existence leaving us like zombies. Cut off from the living God, thinking that we are fully alive but really just the living dead.
The gardener, or so she thinks, draws alongside Mary.
“Woman, why are you crying? Who is it that you are looking for?”
“Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him.”
Jesus said to her, “Mary.”
Today the living God who has defeated death calls out your name. He calls you out from death and invites you to full life in him.
Jesus says, “I have come that you might have life and have it to the full.”
How does this work, how can we be fully alive? Jesus puts it like this.
“This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life.”
Jesus is calling your name and inviting you to believe in him. He made it possible for you to be fully alive. Do you want to step out from the shadows into life? If you have not made that decision before then you will find these simple steps helpful. Use them as a prayer.
Acknowledge – I acknowledge that Jesus is God. That you died on the cross to deal with everything that was wrong in the world and defeated death by rising to life.
Confess – I am sorry for the things I have done wrong, please forgive me.
Thanks - Thank you for forgiving me.
Send – Jesus send your Holy Spirit to fill me with your life.