The disciple John tells us (John 20) that Jesus was on His way to present His resurrection body to the Father God, to put the full stop to the sentence that was written before time began that would usurp Satan’s claim to the earth and restore to it the  authority of Heaven.  He was the sacrificial lamb and the Priest ‘Holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the Heavens, (Hebrews 7:26).  His presentation of Himself, the sacrificial, risen lamb to the Father would reverberate throughout all eternity. 

Yet He paused this momentous journey to reassure a broken hearted Mary.  When the others had gone she stayed, standing outside the tomb, bereft, without hope, her soul in fragments. Even the two angels didn’t impress her.  

Then Jesus paused on His journey and appeared behind her.  ‘Don’t touch me,” He cautioned, “for I haven’t yet ascended to the Father. But go find my brothers and tell them that I ascend to my Father and your Father, my God and your God.’ 

Some commentators say that He was warning Mary not to cling to Him, not to hold Him back, and others point to the commandment in Haggai 2:13 about the rules when presenting the sacrificial blood of atonement.  He was preparing to enter the heavenly temple with His own blood to obtain eternal redemption for us.   But whichever way you look at it, whatever the reason, the fact is that He paused to speak to a woman with a broken heart.  This story speaks to me every Easter – the God of the universe, of all that is made, seen or unseen, cares about each one of us like this.

That’s how big, how huge, how powerful our God is!



Louise Morse

Louise Morse MA (CBT) is media and external relations manager for the Pilgrims’ Friend Society. She is a writer and speaker, and author of books on issues of old age, including dementia, published by Lion Monarch and SPCK. She is a cognitive behavioural therapist, and her Masters’ dissertation examined the effects of caring for a loved one with dementia on close relatives.

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