“But the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified.”
Matthew 28:5 ESV
The rhododendron, magenta in soft color cups its petals upward from a thick branch, thick as a tiny tree.
The leaves that flare around and about it are dark green, thick and waxy. I believe it’s a rare flowering shrub. Three years ago, like a child finding a treasure, I found it. Now, I wait with a blissful anticipation to see the display again.
The spectacularly elegant flower, I believe a cousin to the azalea but so much bolder.
I had lunch with a friend not long ago. It was a first time sit together, want to know you better sort of thing.
She is an artist. She and I shared our stories, the alikeness and the differences.
I admire her strength, her intelligence and what I see as a determined grace to flourish.
After talk of art, childhood and what comes from the heart more…writing or art comparisons, we began to talk about what it means to be female.
How we’d like in our lifetimes to see women not seen as less capable, less worthy, “less than”.
I thought of this conversation for days.
I thought about what feels like futility in efforts and endeavors if one is a woman not man.
Today, I discovered why the conversation lingered, the one that wondered why we are valued.
Here we again, that whole seeking value conundrum I’ve been trying to quit.
Last week, I wrote myself a very honest note.
“The more you achieve, the more you receive, the more you are known for your art, your writing, your appearance, your family or some other surprise special thing…the more you are known for these things, the more it will never be enough. Because the “more” of you, the value others need is the true story of you …you seeing your value according to Jesus.”
Because, Jesus is more. Jesus is better.
In a flash of clarity, I almost heard my very thoughts.
Women need to know that their value is according to God and they need to know sooner than later.
I need to somehow tell them.
Then, I thought of the women Jesus empowered.
I thought of Mary Magdalene, the woman healed from evil debilitating spirits. I thought of how there were no requirements of her to be the one standing beside the empty tomb, to hear Jesus say
Mary, it’s me, go tell all the men.
And I’m thinking now of the woman at the well, the woman sick for years, the women who in those days were supposed to be little and be belittled never were seen that way by Jesus…so, why must we think we’re supposed to feel small?
Or worse even, find our value in any other effort or acclaim.
I’m a work in progress here. Today, I painted a piece with women scattered “At Rest” and I rested too.
Strong like a rhododendron, beautifully fragile in its display, held up by strong branch, deep, deep roots,
Seekers of strength, light and love us all.
May we settle and sit quietly and remember the peace that never leaves and the value decided by God of us all longer before than we can ever know.
Continue and believe.
I will too.
One thought on “Seekers”
Amen. Lovely. 🌹