April 23, 2020

Frantically Searching

John 20:1-18

“They have taken my Lord away,” she said, “and I don’t know where they have put him.”

—  John 20:13

Mary couldn’t find Jesus. She looked in the tomb and checked with the disciples. By the time she turned to the man who she supposed was the gardener, she was in tears and nearly frantic. “Where is Jesus?” she wondered.

I know the feeling. In my youth I knew I needed Jesus in my life more. I went to church, I tried to be good, and I believed Jesus was real, was God, and had died for my sins. I trusted in him for salvation, but I longed for something more. I wanted to experience Jesus being right there with me.

Maybe you’ve felt that way too. Even people who are committed to Christ sometimes long for a more powerful sense of his presence—­especially in times of loneliness, sickness, or grief.

Maybe you’re just learning about Jesus and aren’t yet sure what to think about his death and resurrection or how to have a relationship with someone in heaven.

These are times when we can understand some of Mary’s desperation. And we can learn from her. Mary didn’t give up; after the two disciples left, she stayed. And then Jesus came.

Jesus eventually gave me a stronger sense of his presence too. I don’t always have that, and it’s certainly not something I can control. But I’m learning that I need to be patient. And those who earnestly seek him will find him.

Dear Jesus, we believe you love us. And we know you are always there. Please also let us experience you closely, Lord, and grow in our faith in you. Amen.

About the author — Scott DeVries

Scott DeVries has served as a church pastor and as a ministry ­coordinator in the Holland, Michigan, area. He currently works at ­facilitating connections between the more than twenty ministries and 1,100 churches of the Christian Reformed Church in North America. He has a passion for prayer, church organization, and studying the Scriptures in their original languages.

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