Imagine the emotions that Mary Magdalene experienced as she clung to Jesus outside the empty tomb. She had known and loved Him throughout His earthly ministry. She had wrestled with the same emotions that we would as He gave His life on the cross.
On the first day of the week, she “came early to the tomb, while it was still dark” intent on finishing the burial preparations (John 20:1; Luke 24:1). When she found that the tomb was empty, she assumed His physical body had been stolen, which only added to her sorrow.
After running to tell the others, she returned to the tomb, stood outside, and wept (John 20:11). As she stood there crying, she saw two angels “where the body of Jesus had been lying” (John 20:12). She explained, “They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid Him” (John 20:13).
Perhaps as quickly as those words left her mouth, “Jesus said to her, ‘Mary!’” and she turned and clung to her Lord (John 20:16-17). Her sorrow was turned to overwhelming joy as she not only realized that His body had not been stolen but that His life had been restored. From sorrow to joy, from despair to relief, from hopelessness to hope.
All of the emotions that Mary experienced are also known to Christians today. When a person recognizes their dire need for a savior, weeps as they search for spiritual hope, and finally becomes overjoyed when they find eternal salvation, they experience a sense of comfort and incredible relief just like Mary.