What was Jesus doing after the resurrection? He was giving us, not just the open tomb, but open ears and an open mouth.
Why didn’t Jesus return to heaven right away? Because he spent 40 days filling the weary with joy.
Easter is two weeks past, and it’s easy to move on from that celebration into the long weeks that stretch ahead. But Jesus didn’t move on. He was quite busy. What was he doing?
“The Lord GOD has given me
the tongue of those who are taught,
That I may know how to sustain with a word
Him who is weary.
Morning by morning he awakens;
He awakens my ear
To hear as those who are taught.”
This past Sunday our church returned to the Isaiah series. But my mind was still on Easter and the 40 days during which Jesus showed himself to one disciple after another. What was it like to have heard him teach and then see him suffer? What could sustain the weariness of their grief?
On that first morning of the new creation, Easter Sunday, Jesus was awakened by his Father and given the words to sustain one weary disciple in particular.
Mary Magdalene was so distressed, she wanted to DO something. As soon as the Sabbath was officially over she took action, buying spices for the corpse and rushing to the garden. How would she move the stone? She’d figure that out later.
But the stone was already moved. The body was gone. Blinded by tears and confusion she spotted a man and blurted, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away (John 20:15).”
But then he said, “Mary.”
Only when she heard his voice, did she recognize Jesus. “Rabboni!” She shouted. Here he was. The one she had followed since the moment he cast seven demons from her wracked and broken body. She had expected a corpse, but was met with a voice calling her name.
Disciples know the voice of their Lord. We hear and follow him because he has opened our ears. Morning by morning we wake up to find him on the pages of our Bible, and as we read, we listen.
He teaches us one day at a time. One drop of truth laid on the tongue, like a mother tending her newborn. Our eyes startle awake and we begin to feed. The Scriptures come alive as he instructs us, line by line, verse by verse. We take it in.
Then we get up to start the days work. Having taken in his word, our words come out differently. Not just have our ears been opened, our tongue has been taught.
Now it’s our turn. The gentle one has taught us, he has opened our ears to his strengthening word. Now he opens our mouths with words to speak to the weary around us. Can you hear the weariness in their words? See it in their bodies?
- Those who dread the day
- Those whose alarm didn’t go off and are already LATE
- Those who tossed and turned all night
- Those who rise to the same old mess
Friends, let’s open our ears to our Lord, so we can trust and follow the voice we have learned to love. Then let’s open our mouths and tell others what we’ve heard.