So now we move to endings – highly appropriate for New Years Eve
Mark 16:1-8 (CEV)
Jesus Is Alive
16 After the Sabbath, Mary Magdalene, Salome, and Mary the mother of James bought some spices to put on Jesus’ body. 2 Very early on Sunday morning, just as the sun was coming up, they went to the tomb. 3 On their way, they were asking one another, “Who will roll the stone away from the entrance for us?” 4 But when they looked, they saw that the stone had already been rolled away. And it was a huge stone!
5 The women went into the tomb, and on the right side they saw a young man in a white robe sitting there. They were alarmed.
6 The man said, “Don’t be alarmed! You are looking for Jesus from Nazareth, who was nailed to a cross. God has raised him to life, and he isn’t here. You can see the place where they put his body. 7 Now go and tell his disciples, and especially Peter, that he will go ahead of you to Galilee. You will see him there, just as he told you.”
8 When the women ran from the tomb, they were confused and shaking all over. They were too afraid to tell anyone what had happened.
They thought it was the end, both his followers and those who wanted rid of him. They thought Jesus was gone, never to be seen or heard of again.
But it turns out the end, was actually the beginning. The beginning of something new. The story is left hanging. What happened next? Where did the women run to? Did they ever get over their fear and tell someone? Was their confusion resolved? We know the answers because we have the rest of the story – but they hadn’t.
Tonight 2013 comes to an end – whether we are desperate for it to be over, or wish it would go on and on. But tomorrow dawns 2014. It is both a new beginning and a continuation. There are lives to lead, unresolved questions to seek answers for, stories to tell.
Maggi talks about the endings of books. I hate it when a books doesn’t have a proper ending. I need to know. I want the ends tied up, to find out what happens. But life has loose ends. The turning of the calendar tonight means that life goes on. Every ending is a beginning.
In a sense Mark hands the story of Jesus over for us to complete.
What is our conclusion, our response to the life and teachings of Jesus? If this is the beginning, what will we make the ending be? How will we live it out in our lives? Jesus’ life was a beginning. He’s shown us what to do – now it’s up to us to get on with it. As his life ended, the life of our response begins.
This year, several of us are reading Beginnings and Endings by Maggi Dawn and joining together to comment on it. Do join us at the Adventbookclub Facebook page, follow #adventbookclub on Twitter or comment below. If you are also reading and blogging on this book, let me know and I will link to your blog.