Wondering. Wishing. Wanting.
Waiting pulls on our hearts, twists our stomach and knots our necks.
What have you been waiting for lately? Dreading a scary health diagnosis? Wishing for a new opportunity, but worried it’s not coming? Terrified that every phone call might bring bad news?
Imagine Jesus’ disciples the day after he hung on a cross. They didn’t have the luxury of knowing what we know, what we celebrate. They were grieving and heartbroken. Agonizing. No doubt the “if onlys” plagued their minds. If only they had noticed what Judas was up to. If only they had stood up for Jesus during the trial. If only they were braver. If only Peter hadn’t denied him three times. If only.
Did the “if only” move into “now what”? With hearts full of grief and agony, did they begin to question their next steps? Should they go back to fishing? Would Zacchaeus and the Woman at the Well return to their sinful lives now that Jesus was gone? Would life go back to “normal”? But … what was normal?
Wondering. Wishing. Wanting. Waiting. Their heartache was palpable.
And what about the women who followed Christ? Devastated and heartbroken, they kept vigil while he hung on the cross. Despite the agonizing pain of grief, they resolutely remained to witness their beloved’s lifeless body be taken off the cross and wrapped in linen. They followed as he was laid to rest in a tomb. But as sundown came, they were faithful to obey the command of the Sabbath.
Luke 23:54-56 (ESV) says, It was the day of Preparation, and the Sabbath was beginning. The women who had come with him from Galilee followed and saw the tomb and how his body was laid. Then they returned and prepared spices and ointments. On the Sabbath they rested according to the commandment.
Imagine. Even in their grief they followed the Lord’s command to rest. Wondering. Wishing. Wanting. Waiting. And hoping.
They didn’t know Christ’s redemptive promise would be fulfilled the very next day. They didn’t know, yet they trusted. They held on tight to hope. And that hope did not disappoint.
LIVE THE STORY
Discuss with your family or friends how you might have felt the day after the horrific crucifixion and before Christ defeated Satan and rose from the dead.
Have you ever wondered where Jesus was the day between Good Friday and Easter?
Click here to watch Pastor Ryan Paulson’s previous message on this topic.
By Cyndie de Neve
Senior Creative Director