On the first day of the week, as the Sabbath was ending, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of Jacob (James), and Salome made their way to the tomb. Mark 16:1 (TPT)
Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Salome, were close friends of Jesus. Each of them had a very special relationship with Him. These were women who cared deeply for Jesus. They loved Him so much that even after a horrible day of watching Jesus be crucified and tending to all the Sabbath rituals they had to do; they rose up early the next morning to tend to His body. Perhaps while watching his agony, amid their pain and fear, they made a plan to get the spices and lovingly anoint his body; and they followed through.
The tradition and ritual of the day was to wash the body of a deceased person, anoint the body and wrap it along with many spices in linens. There was a very specific manner in which this was done. Each limb was separately wrapped, the hands and feet tied, and then the entire body was encased in another piece of linen. According to the gospel of John, Nicodemus and Joseph brought seventy-five pounds of spices–including aloe and myrrh, to prepare his body for burial. Because they were rushing to get all of this done before sundown, it was all done in a hurry.
It was very early in the morning as the first streaks of light were beginning to be seen in the sky. They had purchased aromatic embalming spices so that they might anoint his body. Mark 16: 2 (TPT) They had a plan. It was good, but there was a problem. A big obstacle. A giant boulder had been rolled in front of the tomb where Nicodemus and Joseph had laid Jesus’s body. These women knew of the stone, but they did not let it stop them. Did they know who or how the stone was going to be removed? No, but they did not let it stop them.
We all face obstacles. These lovely, loving women could have given up and said, “we can’t move the stone, so why bother?” But they persevered. I know there have been times when I have looked at presumed obstacles ahead and it has kept me from even starting a project. What about you?
What a surprise! But when they arrived, they discovered that the very large stone that had sealed the tomb was already rolled away! Mark 16:4 (TPT) How amazed they must have been! When we do what we can do, in faith, it helps set in motion the moving of the obstacles that seem to stand in our way. If we are on God’s path, we must not be afraid of any obstacles that loom before us. Remembering He who knows all, sees all and has prepared our path is in charge of our obstacles. There are three basic ways, in the natural to get past an obstacle. Move it. Go around it. Climb it. For these women, God totally moved the obstacle for them. Their hard work of preparing the spices was not needed. They discovered such a greater miracle that it far surpassed their greatest hopes. Jesus was alive. It is because of that resurrection we can face our obstacles with faith, rather than fear.
My dear friends, many times in our journey with the Lord, as we draw closer to an obstacle, it looms larger and seems even more intimidating, but do not let that deter you. Journey on, seeking His wisdom and His direction in dealing with said obstacle. Use the time to draw nearer to Him. He uses those times in such a special way, if we allow Him to do it. Every obstacle we face is an opportunity to watch our God work on our behalf and lead to even greater testimonies.
Father, I ask You to encourage us today as we face a variety of obstacles. Let us view them as opportunities to seek Your face for Your solutions. Some of us are facing very big obstacles that only You can handle, I ask You to show up for my friends. Show them what to do. Thank You, that we do not need to fear any obstacles, accept them or live under them as we walk with You. In Jesus’ Name, amen.