The angel said unto the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified.” Matthew 28:5 (NIV)
There are moments when select people are blessed by having their eyes opened to see these spiritual beings that we call angels. The skeptic will forever puff himself up and belittle those who are so bold as to proclaim such experience. But the issue has little value as a point of argument between men. This question is one where each of us will one day have to take up with One greater than us.
Difficulty to accept the belief in spiritual entities probably has its root in fear of the unknown. But rather than argue, let us examine the experience. When a human is confronted with the apparition the response is nearly always the same. This encounter always leaves the witness humbled and awed. It can stir even the bravest and most confident warrior.
The soldiers who guarded the tomb were completely defenseless and the women were struck with fear. A study into all of the many accounts held in the Holy Scriptures would repay us with many similar accounts. At the same time it is both wonderful and terrifying to have the foundations of your reality altered. It is one thing to believe that there is more out there, but it is a completely different experience to actually see into that land.
As we each struggle over our issues and the impossibility of those encounters, we struggle also to gain some solid ground upon which to stand. When the foundations are taken away and your reality shaken, what is left to hold on to?
The angel spoke reassuringly to the ladies. ¨Don´t be afraid,¨ he said. His words were to comfort them and show them they had nothing to worry about. Their reaction was a normal and adequate reaction. But He wanted them to know that the Ruler of this ¨other reality¨ had our well-being in mind.
It may be interesting to note to whom these words of reassuring go out to. The angel said, ¨you, who are looking for Jesus.¨ If this describes you and me we too will have nothing to worry about. We can be a part of those to whom God´s word of comfort and good will is sent. Even if the skies are torn apart and our reality is rent in two, we can rest assured that whatever our new reality brings us, is not without a strong, firm and fixed point. We, who look to the Lord, may find strength to confront our fears because our hope is in the very One who is running that greater reality.
Heaven is a marvelous place, but that is because of the presence of the Lord. Our God is there and He is surrounded with all sorts of wonderful things that bow to Him, please Him, and bring Him glory. We too may one day revel in all those things. But the highest pursuit, to which you and I can attain, will be to behold Him. So let us encourage all those today who look to Jesus.
At the same time one should feel more than a slight feeling of concern for those who do not look for Jesus. Those poor self-confident souls may one day be found without this reassuring word. Let us pray for them too.
Dear Jesus, thank You for sending Your messengers with comforting words. Please help us find ourselves among those who are looking for You. Please show us how to share Your blessed reassurance with those around us too, so that on that day when all our reality is shaken, we may all have our hope in You. But most important, give us we pray, and urgency in our searching and a need for finding You.