And when they heard that He was alive and had been seen by her, they did not believe.
In the closing scenes of "The Wizard of Oz", an excited Dorothy, finally revived from the bump on her head, vividly recounts her amazing adventures in that fantastic and fanciful land. The faces of her family and friends lovingly suppress their amusement as she tells her tale. She sees right through them.
"Doesn't anyone believe me?" She asks, exasperated, desperately wanting them to accept her words as truthful.
"Of course, we believe you, Dorothy," Uncle Henry assures her, patronizingly.
Dorothy knows they don't believe a thing she has said.
When we hear news that sounds too good to be true, don't we react much like Uncle Henry, Auntie Em, and the rest of the folks at Dorothy's bedside?
If the tale comes from a child, we may humor them. Play along. Listen patiently. And, dismiss it gently.
However, if it is an adult telling the too-good-to-be-true story, even a person we know to be honest and forthright, don't we doubt? Don't we wonder if our friend, like poor Dorothy, has suffered a nasty bump to the head?
Do we say things like:
"I've never heard of such a thing!"
"That can't possibly be true!"
"Why are you making all this up?"
"Did you really think I'd believe you?"
Words which Mary most likely heard on that day from Jesus' disciples.
The day she saw Him and ran with urgency and joy to tell.
Only to be called into question. Ridiculed. Humiliated.
Because, even if in their heart of hearts, the Lord's followers want to trust her words, they don't.
It's simply too good to be true.
They only believe when they see for themselves.
Jesus. The Risen Christ.
The story too good NOT to be true . . .
What have you heard that sounded too good to be true, but turned out to be true after all?
Will you join me in prayer?
We thank You, Father, for the life, death, and resurrection of Your Son, our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. May we share with others His story, the one that is too good NOT to be true. The story of love and grace, forgiveness and salvation, the world needs to hear and believe. Amen.
Psalms 103 or 111, 114
1 Corinthians 15:12-28