Sometimes we can’t see what is right in front of us. On Easter morning, Mary Magdalene talks directly to Jesus but mistakes him for the gardener. Only when he calls her by name does she recognize him – “Rabbonai!”. Then he sends her off to announce the good news of the Resurrection.
Jesus’ two companions on the road to Emmaus did not recognize him either, until they broke bread together. And Thomas the Apostle, not satisfied with second hand news, wants to experience the risen Christ for himself. When he finally does, he makes a profound statement of faith, addressing Jesus as “My Lord and my God.”.
These persons are among the rare few who physically witnessed the risen Christ, but Jesus blesses those “Who have not seen, yet have come to believe.”.
Mary’s proclamation of recognition resonates with us, as does Thomas’s, because we too have seen the Lord and are witness to the extraordinary joy of knowing the risen Christ, through faith. Being faithful does not mean we have it all figured out. It means we live with uncertainty, knowing it will take us deeper into the heart of Christ – our Lord and our God.
On Easter Sunday, Jesus will call us each by name and send us forth to declare to the world that we have seen the Lord, that we have witnessed “the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth,” that he is risen – and so are we!