Prior to Melissa’s sermon on this Easter Sunday, Pam read the poem, “Christ as a Gardener” by Andrew Hudgins.
Mary returns to the tomb Jesus had been laid in after she and the two disciples found it empty. She’s weeping. Then she sees these angels. Then there’s this gardener. He had to have been there all along, hadn’t he? She’s begging him to tell her what he saw. “Where is the body of Jesus?!?” She can’t see it’s him…until he says her name. “Mary.” And her eyes are opened.
We wait beside tombs, because that is where he says he’ll show up. Where love leads us back, without reason, and often without hope. God will show up where there is nothing left but devastation, where there is no way out or where no one else is coming. It’s here, waiting here, where our grief at the pain inflicted by the world will break open. And we’ll discover the one who is there calling us by name. Jesus is there, who makes contact.
As a closing for the message, we listened to the song “Down in the River to Pray,” sung by Abu Ali, followed by the video “Wait for It” by Shellee Layne Coley