The One Thing It Takes to Witness for Jesus

I’m not surprised the disciples wouldn’t believe me. Why should they? I was the crazy one from whom the Lord cast out seven demons. The sinful woman with a past. 

I don’t even know why Salome and the other Mary and I went to the tomb in the first place. The disciples were hiding out, afraid the Romans were going to arrest them. We didn’t have much to worry about, I guess. They don’t consider women serious threats. Or serious disciples. 

It just didn’t seem right to leave him that way. Joseph and Nicodemus had wrapped his body. Thank goodness they had at least buried him instead of throwing him into a common grave with the criminals. But just to put him in the grave and leave him? 

So we went. We brought spices. But halfway there we realized we had no way to open the tomb. 

Turns out we shouldn’t have worried. There was the tomb – but the stone had been rolled away. 

I looked inside. There were the grave clothes, and the head cloth, but Jesus’ body was . . . GONE. 

Suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside us. We were so scared! And then one man spoke: 

"Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: 'The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.'" 

And then we remembered his words. (Mat. 28:4-8). 

But it was so hard to wrap our minds around it. I’d cried a boatload of tears, and now, seeing the empty tomb, and the men, I cried a boatload more. I guess that’s why I didn’t see the gardener until he was right up on us. 

 “Sir, if you’ve taken him away, show me where you’ve laid him.” 

And then he called my name. “Mary,” and I knew. I knew it was him. It was true. He was alive! 

I flung myself at his feet, and just cried and cried and cried. Once again, there I was, anointing his feet with my tears. Only this time, instead of tears of shame and repentance, they were tears of JOY. 

“Don’t cling to me, Mary,” he said, “I haven’t gone to my Father. Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me. Now Go!” 

I ran. I ran faster than I’d ever run before. I went to the place where the disciples were hiding. The door was locked, and I pounded and pounded, but they wouldn’t let me in. I’m sure they thought it was the Romans. 

Finally I called out, “It’s me, Mary. I’ve seen Jesus! He’s alive!” 

Well, that got their attention. They opened the door, and I told them all I’d seen. “He’s alive, I tell you. I saw him, and I touched him, and he spoke to me. He called me by name!” 

They looked at me like I was crazy. I knew what they were thinking. Seven demons. 

“Don’t you remember?” I said. “He told us he had to die, but after three days, he’d rise again. I tell you, I’ve seen him.” 

Finally Peter and John left, but the others, they just shook their heads, too sad and disappointed to believe. 

I don’t know why Jesus chose to appear to me first. I’m the least credible of all. I’m a woman. I have a sinful past. I’ve battled demons. I’m not well-educated or eloquent. 

But I believed it when Jesus said, “Your faith has saved you,” and I believe he has risen, just as he said. 

Maybe faith is all it takes to be a witness for Jesus.

What about you? Do you ever doubt your ability to be a witness for Jesus because of your past or your lack of gifts or talents? Are you willing to consider that all it takes to be a witness for Jesus is saving faith? 

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(This story comes from Mark 16:1-11.)

And if you enjoyed this post, you'll want to read the backstory in "What We Have in Common with Mary Magdalene."

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  1. So beautiful.....Yes, i doubt my ability to be a witness for many reasons. I love Jesus,and try every day to walk by faith....thank you for this story....

  2. So beautiful.....Yes, i doubt my ability to be a witness for many reasons. I love Jesus,and try every day to walk by faith....thank you for this story....

    1. I think it’s one of Satan’s most effective tricks, JoJo. To make us feel too unworthy to brag on what God has done in our lives. Let’s not let him!


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