Mary Magdalene and the courage to become aware

I see in the encounter of Mary Magdalene with the risen Jesus an image of the courage to be spiritually aware (Jn 20:11–18). After Peter and the other disciple leave the tomb, Mary remains there alone. She cannot leave this last link to the one she loves; she is also afraid of the emptiness of the tomb, the sign that her Lord has been taken from her. Mary does, therefore, what we often do when our hearts are similarly torn: she stands frozen, unable to move, and her tears express her pain. Then this wonderful woman of God has the courage to look into the darkness of the tomb. She finds that it is not as empty as she feared, and a process begins that leads to that deeply personal encounter with Jesus expressed in the exchange of names. Her heart lifts, knowing that she will never be alone again, that the Lord who has conquered death will never cease to pronounce her name with love. The courage to look within, to be aware of the spiritual experience in our hearts and thoughts, opens the door to a new and rich encounter with the Lord we love. This awareness is the gateway to the discerning life. It is to live like Mary of Nazareth, alive to God’s action in her life, pondering it and keeping it in her heart (Lk 2:19, 51).

Gallagher, Timothy M.. Setting Captives Free (p. 1). The Crossroad Publishing Company. Kindle Edition.


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