The Contemplative Companion for Tuesday, April 18, 2017

And they said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?”
She said to them, “They have taken my Lord,
and I don’t know where they laid him.”
When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus there,
but did not know it was Jesus. – John 20.13 – 14

We can identify with Mary’s grief and experience of loss. Life seems to take things from us – even our most beloved. We can loose our job. Our dignity. Our health. Our kids. Our reputation. Our spouse. Our mental capacity. Sometimes it even feels like we have lost everything in life. Or just lost in the good game of life. Yet perhaps there is more to it than just a profound loss. Perhaps there is also something to be gained in and through every good bye and passing grief.

Mary’s was a threefold trauma: first, losing Jesus when he was arrested. Second, losing Jesus when he died on the cross. And third, now losing Jesus when she came to the tomb to grieve, only to find his body gone and conclude his body had been stolen, adding insult to her profound agony of grief.

The resurrection slowly transformed Mary’s grief into the miracle of acceptance and then recognition of the new presence. It will never be the same – as it was. But something new has arisen from within the tomb of our loss, and that gift of perception can change everything.

We can’t do it alone. There will be angels sent to help us. Strangers. Friends. A book. A sunrise. Something that companions with us to help us confront our loss and see through it into a deeper understanding of it. And then the resurrection miracle(s) take full flight: we “see” the Risen Presence-of-Love-With-Us where we once just saw darkness, emptiness, sadness, loss, hopelessness. And we feel a love that is stronger than death, and that love IS Always with us through the veil of every grief and letting go we are asked to make in this life.

It turns out that after the tears and immediate tragedy are wiped away, we can have eyes to see beyond the immediacy of the pain of our loss. And with these Resurrection eyes, we might also see the Presence of a hidden gift to us through the loss. It will take time Yet there is reason for hope, and in this moment that is all that needed to take the next step and embrace the next moment. With Mary you will be carried along, from strength to strength, morning by morning.

© 2017 All Rights Reserved.


  1. Once again your writing resonates with where I am as I just lost my loyal loving constant furry companion Golden Retriever I have had for 9 years. Your words Touch my soul in a profound way. Thank you


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