A couple times during Lent I posted mini-meditations on meeting Jesus face to face (Hangin' with Jesus and Hangin' with Jesus - Part Deux). My somewhat irreverent meditations aside, what would it really be like to meet Jesus face to face?
Today's Gospel reading from Matthew 28 gives us a look at what it was like to meet the Risen Lord. The NAB translation of verse 9 is a little weak, it simply states that Jesus greeted Mary Magdalene and the other Mary. Other translations suggest actual greetings such as, "Greetings" or "Peace be to you". Then the women fell at his feet, hugged his lower legs, and worshipped him. Although the women knew it was Jesus, there must have been something very different about his resurrected nature because Jesus says to them, "Do not be afraid."
What if, when you walk out of your house tomorrow morning, Jesus is standing there and uses a modern greeting such as "Hi" or "Hey, howyadoin'?" How would you respond? Would you fall at his feet or would you fall into his arms? Or would you want to start a fist fight?
What would you say? Or would you be unable to speak? Or at seeing the Risen Lord face to face would all of your questions and demands and prayers simply fade away?
What would Jesus say to you? What message do you need from him right now? How would you feel when you hear him say the words: do not be afraid? Why do you need to hear Jesus speak those words?
The Risen Lord has a different message for each of us, but one message is the same: Do not be afraid. Take time to rest in those words and know the peace that Jesus wants you to have deep inside.