A reading from the book of John Chapter 20:1-9
On the first day of the week,
Mary of Magdala came to the tomb early in the morning,
while it was still dark,
and saw the stone removed from the tomb.
So she ran and went to Simon Peter
and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved, and told them,
“They have taken the Lord from the tomb,
and we don’t know where they put him.”
So Peter and the other disciple went out and came to the tomb.
They both ran, but the other disciple ran faster than Peter
and arrived at the tomb first;
he bent down and saw the burial cloths there, but did not go in.
When Simon Peter arrived after him,
he went into the tomb and saw the burial cloths there,
and the cloth that had covered his head,
not with the burial cloths but rolled up in a separate place.
Then the other disciple also went in,
the one who had arrived at the tomb first,
and he saw and believed.
For they did not yet understand the Scripture
that he had to rise from the dead.
He has risen and we can say Alleluia Alleluia Alleluia! I think of Mary Magdalein distraught and exhausted over the death of her Lord. Then, to add to her anguish, His body is missing. But then a glorious thing happens. He isn't missing. His body wasn't stolen. He has risen from the dead! How she rejoices and clings to our Lord. But not for long. This is only a foretaste of what's to come.
Jesus doesn't just rise to give us hope in Him. He rises to give us hope in our own life, death and resurrection. We will be raised again. We will be reunited with those we love. We will be in our glorified bodies and united in Him. We have hope when our loved ones die. We have hope when our bodies give out on us and we die. Jesus shows us that our bodily death is temporary. He conquered death for us so that the gates of heaven are open and all we have to do is follow Him.