by Elli Atchison, World Vision
Mary Magdalene has always been one of my Bible heroes. I can relate to her. Meeting Jesus changed her life. The Gospel of Luke tells us that she had demons in her past. But Jesus set her free, and she loved Him deeply for it.
Though she is not officially named as one of the twelve disciples, it is believed that she was one of His companions. She traveled with Him and listened to His teachings (Luke 8:2-3). She probably witnessed many of His miracles. She was one of the few friends who stood at the foot of the cross and watched her beloved Savior suffer and die (John 19:25). And before sunrise, three days later, it was Mary who was the first to return to the tomb alone (John 20:1).
It is obvious that Mary loved Jesus so much that she just wanted to be close to Him, even after His death. When she discovered His body was missing from the tomb she stooped down at the entrance and wept. (John 20:1-11). Blinded by grief, she did not even recognize the Beloved when He greeted her. But, as you can imagine, when Mary finally realized that Jesus was alive, her joy was too much to contain. I imagine she just wanted to rush into His arms and never let go!