When Mary Magdalene and her friend, who was also named Mary, started down the road that morning they were very sad. They didn't know that this would turn out to be a wonderful day they would never forget.
Just three days before, they had been with Jesus' friends as they laid Him in a borrowed tomb. He had suffered a terrible death on the cross. Jesus was good, but the angry crowd that had been at the cross that day did not think so. And now Jesus was dead.
Mary Magdalene and Mary were going to the tomb to put sweet spices on Jesus' body. They were glad they could do at least one more thing for Him.
As they started on their way, they worried about how they would move the huge stone away from the opening of the tomb. Perhaps the soldiers who were guarding the tomb would help them.
All of a sudden there was an earthquake! The two friends hurried to the tomb to see what had happened. When they arrived they saw that the stone had been rolled back from the opening. An angel was sitting on top of the stone. The soldiers who had been guarding the tomb were so afraid, they fainted!
What a sight! What was happening? The women did not know what to think. The angel looked at them and told them not to be afraid. He said, "Jesus is not here. He is alive, just as He said He would be! Come here and see the place where the Lord lay."
The women looked into the tomb and the angel said, "Go quickly and tell His disciples that Jesus is alive. You will see Him soon."
Both Marys were thrilled. Their hearts were filled with joy. They ran as fast as they could. They wanted to tell His disciples the good news. Jesus was alive!
Jesus is still alive today. He loves all people and wants us to show our love for Him. Many years ago, Jesus' friends sang songs of joy and they worshiped and praised Him. These are still good ways to show Jesus we love Him. Will you remember to praise Jesus for what He has done for you?
Invite two or three of your child's friends to an Easter Joy Hunt sometime during this week. Purchase brightly colored plastic eggs which open up, revealing a hollow inside. In each egg place a piece of paper on which you have written a simple Easter message or Bible verse. Some examples: Jesus arose! Jesus loves you. Jesus is alive. Jesus takes care of us.
Place one message in each egg and add a small trinket such as a balloon or sticker. Hide the filled eggs for the children to hunt. After the eggs have all been found, help each child open his eggs and read his messages.
Follow the hunt with a reading of the Easter story from a children's storybook.