Before you begin your retreat, pause for a few moments to set aside distractions. Take this time to remember that you are in the loving presence of God, who is with you on your journey of faith.
Then the angel said to the women in reply, "Do not be afraid! I know that you are seeking Jesus the crucified. He is not here, for he has been raised just as he said."
Remembering our pain and sorrow for loved ones we have lost, we understand the grief of the women at the Jesus' tomb. The bewildering absence of his body and the unexpected appearance of the angel make their experience unfamiliar and frightening. Addressing their fear, the angel reminds them of Jesus' promise that he would be raised from the dead. Like these followers of Jesus, we too need to be reminded that Jesus is life-giving, especially when we are afraid. When we trust in Jesus, he can ease us from our sorrow and fear.
What fear can I offer to Jesus today?
What sorrow of mine could use his love?
(Speak to Jesus using this prayer or one of your own.)
Jesus, risen Lord, lift me beyond my fears from death into new life with you. Let that new life grow in others as they hear of your love for them.