Trials in our lives often get worse before they get better. Mary, Mary Magdalene, and Salome experienced this firsthand in the days following Jesus' crucifixion. Before they could be surprised by the resurrection, they had to struggle through three torturous days as hopelessness threatened to overwhelm them.
Read James 1:2-12. In this Scripture, the Lord urges us to view our trials through a certain lens—the lens of promise. God promises us that persevering through trials leads to maturity, completeness, and the crown of life (v. 12). This is why He calls us blessed when we persevere under trial.
There is no great stone in your life that God cannot remove.
As Mary, Mary Magdalene, and Salome approached Christ's tomb, they were in the throes of trial. They also had a seemingly unsolvable problem—a huge boulder likely stood between them and the body of Jesus. While they were on their way to the place where He was laid, they asked each other, "Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?" (Mark 16:3). It seemed that every obstacle stood in their way.
Yet, they persevered in going to the tomb. And to their utter amazement, when they arrived, they discovered that the stone had been rolled away.
The massive stone had been placed there to stop Jesus from returning from the dead, as He had promised. Roman soldiers also stood guard in front of it. But neither the soldiers nor the stone could keep Christ from overcoming death. What was such an immovable obstacle for these three women was like a grain of dust to the resurrected Jesus.
Today, we are all in need of this same resurrection power. As we continue to celebrate the wonder of Resurrection Sunday, God wants to remind you afresh that there is no great stone in your life that He cannot remove. As you walk with Him, He will bring you through the fiery trial and give you the crown of life. So persevere in seeking His face, trusting Him to move the immovable stone—whatever it may be—in His timing.
Prayer: Lord, I praise You for Your resurrection power. Thank You for that same power working in me to give me new life as I submit to Your will. I know that in every trial, I can have peace because You have made a way and moved the stone. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.
"Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him" (James 1:12).
Learn more in Dr. Michael Youssef's sermon Surprised by Hope: LISTEN NOW | WATCH NOW