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Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Mary Magdalene

Mary Magdalene owns a special place in nearly everyone's heart. In recent years, scholars are rehabilitation her image because many feel she has been maligned throughout history. The fact is that we know so little about her and other biblical characters but we hold onto deeply emotional convictions about them. We do not want to hold onto the mystery as much as we want to fill in the gaps of knowledge with our own opinions. We do it because of the affection we have towards her.

She loved Jesus of Nazareth so dearly. She stayed by him at the cross and outside the tomb and she was elevated in stature as the first witness of the resurrection, but what makes her so interesting is that she was able to turn from her concerns to those of others. In the garden, when she was consumed by her own loss and grief and could see nothing clearly, Jesus raised her mind to be concerned for others. She continued to announce and become a credible source to the mystery of his resurrection. 

She gives us a good model of the way we are to turn from our self-concern to a ministry of caring for others. In the first half of our life, we try to define who we are. We collect possessions, trophies, awards, and many things that help us to feel good about who we are becoming. The more important work comes when we give all those things away and are defined by the way we are in service to others with radical freedom that sets others free. We allow the resurrection of Jesus to take root in the lives of others. Then we achieve the happiness we seek. In my prayer, Mary became very happy because she gave wisdom, grace, and liberation to others because she allowed herself to be transformed by the resurrection.

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