Saturday, April 23, 2011

A Better Me: Day 7!

After the Sabbath, as the first day of the week was dawning,
Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to see the tomb.
And behold, there was a great earthquake;
for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven,
approached, rolled back the stone, and sat upon it.
His appearance was like lightning
and his clothing was white as snow.
The guards were shaken with fear of him
and became like dead men.
Then the angel said to the women in reply,
“Do not be afraid!
I know that you are seeking Jesus the crucified.
He is not here, for he has been raised just as he said.
Come and see the place where he lay.
Then go quickly and tell his disciples,
‘He has been raised from the dead,
and he is going before you to Galilee;
there you will see him.’
Behold, I have told you.”
Then they went away quickly from the tomb,
fearful yet overjoyed,
and ran to announce this to his disciples.
And behold, Jesus met them on their way and greeted them.
They approached, embraced his feet, and did him homage.
Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid.
Go tell my brothers to go to Galilee,
and there they will see me.”
Matthew 28:1-10

Overjoyed, Yet Fearful

For day 7 I reflected on the Gospel for tonight's Easter Vigil Mass (above).
Oh how I love the Easter Vigil!
Fire. Darkness. Lights. Darkness.
Word. Prayer. Repeat.
Everything about it is so Catholic and so Heaven.
Illness may have kept me home this time, but we will meet again Easter Vigil!

While reflecting on this Gospel, there was so much that awed me.

First to go on a little tangent before I get down to the meat and potatoes...
When I think of Angels, I think of fierce beings of light and sword.
They are so beautiful and powerful and if we saw one in all it's glory,
we would die right at that moment.
The description of the Angel in the Gospel, to me,
is better than any picture I've seen.
There was a great earthquake when the Angel descended. Awesome!
His appearance was "like lightning". Beautiful.
His clothes were "white as snow". Pure.

Okay, now looking inward...
When the Angel speaks, the first thing he says to the women,
"Do not be afraid."
What a great greeting.
So often I ignore, or try to hide from the promptings in my heart.
Simply because I am afraid.
Afraid of what is being asked of me.

The Angel tells them the good news, and knowing they will need proof,
invites them to go look for themselves. 
Again, something I would need.

Then he gives them the mission
and they go off "fearful, yet overjoyed."
The women had a joy in their heart at just the sound of Jesus' name,
at the very thought of seeing Him and embracing Him again
that any fear they felt was overcome by their joy.
When Heaven asks something of me,
I feel so humbled and blessed that I am even asked!
I worry though, that contrary to the "Marys", I am overjoyed, yet fearful.

When the women see Jesus they "embrace His feet" and "do Him homage."
This is such a beautiful picture.
I can just see them, prostrate on the dirt road before our Risen Lord
 who is glowing in snow white;
they, kissing His beautiful feet.
Adoration at it's finest.
And again He says "Do not be afraid."

So what is there to be afraid of?
Why do I feel overjoyed, yet fearful instead of the other way around?
I think, I fear that if I gave in, to all of Heaven's promptings,
to all of Jesus' wooing,
to all of His sweet Love,
that I would never come back.
The small tastes of His overwhelming Divine Love that I have
The times I have given into it, I wanted to stay forever.
Why should I fear that?
God will do with me what He wills and that is perfect.
No more can I let the fear win.
So today, and tomorrow,
as we celebrate the Resurrection of our beautiful and glorious Christ,
I am praying for the courage and desire
to let Heaven's joy overcome my fear.
On the other side, is something truly amazing.

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