Suddenly Jesus met them. “Greetings,” he said. They came to him, clasped his feet and worshiped him.
The women came to look at Jesus’ tomb and to mourn.
Matthew interrupts the sadness of the story with a somewhat scary and somewhat comical scene. An angel comes to the tomb, with an appearance like lightning and causing an earthquake, and he rolls away the stone and sits on it. The soldiers guarding the tomb are so terrified that they shake and fall down like they are dead. And the women? They are scared too.
The women have come to the tomb to see it and grieve. But the angel tells them that the one who was in the tomb isn’t there. And there’s no need to grieve anymore because Jesus has risen from the dead! In fact, he’s on his way to Galilee and wants his disciples to see him there.
So the women who have come to grieve hurry away “filled with joy.” And if their joy is already full, what happens next makes their joy overflow: Jesus meets them. The person they have come to see dead is standing in front of them alive!
Do you remember when you first met Jesus? He takes our sorrow and turns it into the greatest joy. If you haven’t met him yet, I hope you meet him soon—maybe even today. It is the greatest joy any of us has known.
Dear Jesus, our eyes are sore from the violence, injustice, sickness, and death in this world. Help us to meet you today so that we may see the joy and hope only you can give. Amen.
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