On the day after Sabbath (the day we call Sunday), Mary awoke before dawn. Quietly making her way through the house, she stood at the front door; looking east, she thanked God for the birth of a new day. As the rising sun lit the earth, she began walking down the path.
Strolling along, listening to the birds and admiring the flowers, she suddenly stopped and gasped. A few feet in front of her was a stranger! She had not seen him approach, yet there he was! He had the appearance of a young man, with hair long and flowing, fiery eyes sparkling with life, and a face gentle and kind. His clothes, glistening like new fallen snow on a sunny morning, were brighter than any white Mary had ever seen.
The stranger spoke and said, “Greetings, Mary, the Lord is with you.”
Taken aback, Mary’s mind raced with questions: Who was this man? How did he know her name? Where had he come from? How had he appeared so suddenly? She wasn’t sure what to do, or what to say. She considered turning, running to her father, and sounding the alarm that an unknown person was in the village.
God of surprise, keep us alert to your presence in our lives. Amen.