Easter • Devotion #1: The Search
Richie Henson | Production Director
I hate when something is missing. I mean, I really hate it, loathe it to my core. One of the worst things to go missing is a cell phone. I rarely misplace my phone, but my wife, on the other hand, makes it a regular habit to set her phone down somewhere in the house and forget about it. Then sometime later, she inevitably asks me, “Have you seen my phone?” Being that I am the most dramatic man in the world, I immediately burst into a fit of anxiety and rage, “What do you mean? You do not know where your phone is?” It then becomes my only focus in life to find this missing phone that often is simply on the dresser or stuck in a couch cushion.
This feeling of great anxiety and stress over something being missing only becomes magnified as the missing item grows in value. If you misplace a pencil, you may not panic, but when it comes to your phone or wallet, that is a different story. So, I can only imagine the anxiety the followers of Jesus felt when they first realized Jesus’ body was missing.
John chapter 20 gives a wonderful account of the resurrection of Jesus. At the start of the chapter, we see Mary Magdalene coming to the tomb only to find the stone removed. She immediately panics and runs to the disciples to tell them the body of Jesus has been taken. That is a horrible way to start the week. The reality of the death of Jesus was still fresh, and now the body of the Lord was taken. The stress Mary must have felt is unimaginable. If I would be concerned at a lost wallet, something of seeming importance and value, how much more deeply would Mary have felt as the body of her Lord was missing. The story continues in verse 11.
John 20:11-16 (NIV) says, “Now Mary stood outside the tomb crying. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb and saw two angels in white, seated where Jesus’ body had been, one at the head and the other at the foot. They asked her, ‘Woman, why are you crying?’ ‘They have taken my Lord away,’ she said, ‘and I don’t know where they have put him.’ At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus. He asked her, ‘Woman, why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?’ Thinking he was the gardener, she said, ‘Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him.’ Jesus said to her, ‘Mary.’ She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, ‘Rabboni!’ (which means ‘Teacher’).”
As bad as it feels to have something of value go missing, it feels even better to find it. How spectacular to know that Jesus’ body went missing not because of hatred, but because He conquered death and the grave by rising again.