Wednesday, July 22
St. Mary Magdalene
John 20:1-2, 11-18
Mary! (John 20:16)
When Jesus freed Mary Magdalene from seven demons, He did more than just heal her (Luke 8:2). He changed the entire direction of her life. The man who had made her whole again now became the center of her life. She left her fishing village of Magdala and became one of Jesus’ disciples. She would follow Him wherever He went.
Eventually that would lead to the cross. While most of His disciples fled, fearing arrest, Mary chose to stay close to Jesus, no matter the cost. She watched as He gave up his spirit, as He was taken down from the cross, as His beaten body was hurriedly prepared for burial and placed in the tomb. And even then, Mary couldn’t stand to be away from Him. The next morning, she hastened to the tomb to anoint Him.
But what might Mary have been thinking as she made her way there? The man I thought was going to save Israel, the man who saved me, has been executed. I staked my life on Him. What am I supposed to do now?
In the instant that Jesus said her name, Mary knew that death had not been able to defeat Jesus. He was alive! And so were her hopes and dreams. She had not spent the past few years in vain. Everything she had given up to follow the Lord had been more than worth it. Her life would continue to have meaning and purpose. She would still be Jesus’ disciple, and now she would also proclaim His resurrection.
What is the meaning and purpose of your life? Is it to love and serve Jesus? Mary Magdalene would tell you there is no greater thing you can do. She would tell you that it is worth everything – your time, your possessions, your energy, and even some pleasures in life – to follow Him. Because He will always love you. Because He will never leave you. And because His plans for you are always greater than anything you could ever conceive of or imagine.
Someday you will meet the risen Lord face-to-face. He will call you by name, and you will recognize Him, just as Mary did, because you staked your life on Him.
“Lord, may You always be the center of my life.”
Song of Songs 3: 1-4
Psalm 63:2-6. 8-9
Our Communion Hymn
“50 Covid Affected Countries sing Amazing Grace”
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