Tuesday, July 11, 2017

An Idle Tale

On the sabbath they rested according to the commandment.
But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they came to the tomb, taking the spices that they had prepared. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they went in, they did not find the body. While they were perplexed about this, suddenly two men in dazzling clothes stood beside them. The women were terrified and bowed their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here, but has risen. Remember how he told you, while he was still in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be handed over to sinners, and be crucified, and on the third day rise again.” Then they remembered his words, and returning from the tomb, they told all this to the eleven and to all the rest. Now it was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the other women with them who told this to the apostles. But these words seemed to them an idle tale, and they did not believe them. Luke 23:56b – 24:11

We live in the days when trusted new sources have become named as "fake" news. It has always been important to have accurate information, whether about the world or about closest friends and family. Women have known what it's like forever to be considered idle gossip and fake news, basically unimportant talk that is shallow and "idle".  I have often found that when going into a new parish, the women of a the church, especially the elders, are a great wealth of information, and often understand the subtleties of the culture. The elected leaders are often less aware that these keen observers.

The women go to the tomb to do their duty. They are preparing to clean their friend's body and to anoint it with oils and perfumes. It is an onerous task, but they went with deep love. Then their world changed in an instant. They had witnessed a multitude of miracles, and were filled with joy, excitement and terror as they ran home. The disciples didn't believe them simply because they were women. Not a trusted source. Yet God, throughout the ages has revealed miracles, new possibilities and new life to the least and the overlooked among us. God invites us today to seek out the witness of those who are overlooked and sidelined. We might just know of miracles and new life in their tales.

Today I ask God to help me seek out those who have been overlooked to hear their story. May we live seeking love and miracles in the simple, everyday overlooked places and people. There we just might encounter the living God.

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