Monday, June 3, 2013

Who Will Roll the Stone Away

Mark 16:2-4; John 14:6
Mary and the other women woke up early in the morning to go and anoint the body of their beloved Master with spices. Their hearts were still downcast and grieved not only for the death of their master but also of the knowledge that there is a big stone blocking the entrance to the tomb where their master lay. The stone represented a barrier to their goal. And they were wondering as to who will roll the stone away for them. They were not strong enough to do it.
When Mary and the other women approached the tomb after Jesus' death, they saw an amazing sight when they looked up but the stone was gone. Who moved the stone? The gospel of Matthew tells us that it was “an angel of the Lord."
Do you have stones stuck in deep ruts at the entrance of your heart—stones of fear, rebellion, despair, or discouragement? Do they loom so large that you surrender at the thought of even trying to remove them? Or have you tried, only to realize that no amount of heaving or shoving would budge them? The obstacles are not made of stone, but they seem just as massive and powerful, and you feel helpless to remove them. Whatever those stones or circumstances are, your enemy has been closing the entrance of your heart and mind, until there is no light remaining. You cannot see a way out or in. You don’t know where to turn, but you know you want the stone removed.
Then you "look up" in faith to Jesus, and what you see is truly amazing. You see not stones, but pebbles, not darkness, but daylight. There is a huge opening, and maybe you hear a faint divine whisper in your spirit, "I have already rolled the stone away."
Easter is all about removing stones. When those barriers disappear, hope emerges from the other side, new life in Christ. But remember, it is God who specializes in stone removal. Whether you are looking for a way in or a way out, Jesus is am the way, the truth, and the life. Jesus' death and resurrection opened the door to new life. The stones that imprison us or block our path have no power to destroy us. God is the only One who can roll away your stones and bring joy, new life, and freedom through Christ.
That's part of the Easter message. And that’s where our hope lies. Keep looking up to Jesus!