“Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the tomb. So she ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him.” Then Peter and the other disciple set out and went toward the tomb. The two were running together, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. He bent down to look in and saw the linen wrappings lying there, but he did not go in.” – John 20
The first few people to come upon the empty tomb did not go in. Their reaction to seeing the missing body of Jesus wasn’t “Yes! This is exactly the way we envisioned this happening! Time for ‘next steps!’” It was hesitation. Maybe even fear. And while I think it would be dangerously presumptuous for me to say I know exactly why they didn’t enter, I can say that I have often stood in a very similar posture (hesitation) on the threshold of some unknown, new chapter of life.
I’d bet you have been there, too. Maybe at the beginning of this Lenten Journey, even. Staring at newness generally means staring into unfamiliarity. And unfamiliarity can be a tad frightening.
And this is why we practice Lent. This is why we practice prayer. Because, as we do, we have a track record and a history to look back on. One in which we can see that God has been good and that whatever newness He has for us in our next step will also be good.
What newness are you being invited into?
What new chapter or new work is lying before you?
What is keeping you from stepping in?
What does it look like for you to actively receive the gift of life you are offered?
What does it look like for you to practice newness?
Pray this with me: “You have been good to me. Help me to remember Your goodness as I move into the next chapter of life. Help me to see a glimpse of what is next for me so that I can step in that direction. Then help me to trust you for the rest of it… the parts I cannot see.”