Mary had been left behind in the city when Peter and John ran off. Now, having nowhere else to go and not really wanting to go anywhere else, she made her way back to the burial garden. She was crying. No wonder! Just days before she had witnessed the arrest, trial, crucifixion, and death of the one person she loved most in all the world. She was exhausted both emotionally and physically. She had been to the tomb once before following the death. This very morning she had made the journey from her home within the city to the tomb three times: once with the women, once to return and inform the two disciples, and now back to the tomb once more after everyone else had gone. It was too much for her, and even though she was a strong woman, she broke down. The story says, "But Mary stood outside the tomb crying" (John 20:10).

I’d like you to think today of a question the Lord Jesus Christ asked Mary Magdalene in the garden on that first Easter morning. He asked her, "Woman, why are you crying?" It is not that Jesus was against tears or that he "hated to see a woman cry," as we sometimes say. Earlier he had cried himself, and on the way to his crucifixion he told the weeping women who followed him to cry for themselves and their children.

Some years ago at the first of the World Congresses on Evangelism held in Berlin, Germany, I heard an associate evangelist for the Billy Graham team tell a story. His name was Fernando Vangioni. He had been conducting an evangelistic campaign in a large city in South America, and after the close of one of the meetings, he had gone to the back of the church to talk to people. A woman approached him there with a story.

There in Jerusalem was God himself in human form walking among men and women and demonstrating who he was by his acts, by his teaching, by his works, by his miracles. These people just would not have him. They rejected him and they did so willingly. Jesus said to them, "If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace - but now it is hidden from your eyes" (Luke 19:42). Jesus’ use of the word "now" implies that it was not hidden from their eyes previously. It had previously been evident. But now he was going to be killed, he was going to be taken away, and now it would be hidden. But it was not hidden during the days of his flesh. Yet they rejected it.

We might think that we cannot come to Jesus without the proper degree of repentance. But he is not asking for any special degree of repentance. He is merely asking you to come. You might delay because you cannot guarantee that you will be a great Christian in the years ahead. Jesus is not asking you to promise that. He will give you the strength to be what he wants you to be. All he is asking you to do is come. Isn’t there something in this picture of the weeping Christ sufficient to melt your own heart, bring you to tears, and draw you to him?