I asked the Lord to make Easter different. After growing up in the church, I “knew” the Easter story. But I wanted to KNOW it from a different and fresh perspective. He delivered as He always does. There were several new perspectives of the events of Holy week that He showed me. One of them was the following of how Mary might have felt on that Saturday long ago. It is all imaginative and fictional, but as I walked through this Holy Week I thought that perhaps someone else might also need a fresh insight ....
Her eyelids crusted with dried tears slowly open. She stretches and squints in the bright morning light and as she takes her first deep breath of the day the reality of yesterday settles into her heart and mind like a boulder sitting on her chest. Her beloved son is gone!
He is laying cold and alone in a tomb. She can't comfort him or see him anymore. She will never hear his voice again or have him near. His beautiful spirit will never occupy the same space as hers. The hole in her heart aches with longing.
She can barely breathe as she gasps for air and the realization of him being gone flies like arrows towards her heart. With every arrow, the reality of his death becomes more confirmed in her spirit and yet there is a piece of it that struggles to protect itself from the truth.
As she walks through that silent Saturday, she comes up against harsh reality time and time again. Every time the door opens, her heart leaps in the hope that it's him, but it's not. She looks for him in the crowds at the market, hoping that it is all just a dream. She was there. She saw the beatings and the nails, but in her mother's heart there still lies a tiny sliver of hope that somehow it was an awful nightmare.
Instead of finding her beautiful son, she sees the sideways glances of people trying not to make eye contact. She sees people going out of their way to avoid her, because they don't know what to say. She hears the whispers of pity that surround her and it nearly crushes her. Don't they know how hard this is? Don't they realize what they have done? She shuffles back home and barely makes it. She collapses into her grief and wraps herself with her memories. Then, the questions come. Should I have kept him more sheltered? Could I have crushed that strong willed spirit out of him? Could I have convinced him to not preach? Should I have stopped him? Did I fail him as his mother? The weight of it all settles into her bones and just about crushes her completely and she cries out in a guttural response to the dark and lonely reality of grief and death. It is more than she can bear. He is gone!
Sealed in a tomb. The world is harder and darker than it was yesterday. The darkness settles into her spirit and the hard edges of grief begin to cling to her heart. She can feel herself changing. Getting harder and bitter but she has no more fight left, nothing more to give. If the darkness takes her light, she won't fight it. She accepts her future with resignation and begins to numbly move through the rest of her day. No feelings, no heart, just motions. She finally makes it to her bed and collapses thankful that she made it through the day. Is this what the rest of her life will exist of? Will she walk through the rest of her life with a hardened heart just existing because the pain is all too much for her? She doesn't even have the mental capacity to sort it all out. She throws her herself under her covers and sleeps in the darkness and the cold. The last thought on her mind...is this what he feels like now? Cold, alone, lifeless....she gives up and drifts off into exhausted sleep.
Did the angels guard her bed that night barely able to contain their excitement? Did God whisper hope in her ear? Was it just as hard for Him to watch His faithful servant mourn knowing what tomorrow would bring? Did hope completely die in her heart? Did she remember and wonder about his words, "The Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and he must be killed and on the third day be raised to life. Did she have an inkling in her spirit that something was coming....
Sunday IS coming...
Maybe you are in the middle of your own silent Saturday. Perhaps hope seems lost and you are just trying to make it through your day without completely losing it. Friend, let me assure you I have been there and there has not been one time He has ever failed me. Put your hope in Him. Sit, listen, pray, learn, lean in, and abide in Him. It may be a silent Saturday but His mercies are new EVERY morning! And Resurrection Sunday is coming! He lives! And He redeems! And He restores! Trust Him with all your guts! Maybe you know He can, but you don’t trust that He will! Ask Him! And then LISTEN! He answers prayers especially if those prayers are seeking a new perspective. Ask Him to show you how He sees the situation and He will!
I pray this Holy Week is full of His presence for both you and your children! We love you!