“Joseph took the body . . . and placed it in his own new tomb that he had cut out of the rock. He rolled a big stone in front of the entrance to the tomb and went away”
We have heard people say that we need to know our business and our craft, “stone cold” in order to be successful. I’m not sure where this came from but I know what it means. It means that in today’s business world that we can’t afford to not be an expert in what business or industry we work. There is too much competition, too many people who are can work a little harder, and an information superhighway that has leveled the playing field on the access to data and knowledge. So, we have to know what we do and have it down, “stone cold”. I talked to a friend and she was describing her husband’s career and she commented on him being 50 years old and having to survive another eight years to retirement. After using the word, “survive”, she correctly spoke of how hard it is for middle aged middle-managers to make it to retirement in a continuous serving company. It is sad, but true. It would seem like it would be better and easier for continuity to actually count for something, but the opposite can happen. We somehow become stale, over-experienced, over-paid, and tired and worn out in the minds of those who are leading a company. All the more reason for us to stay current, experts, continuously learning and knowing what we do “stone cold”.
When Mary Magdalene returned to the tomb on the third day and found the stone rolled back and Jesus gone, she could have only been worried, scared, and upset at what must have happened. Her first reaction wasn’t that He had risen from the dead but that someone had tampered and broken into the tomb and stolen Jesus’ body. Had she reached and touched the stone that has been rolled away if would not have given any clue to what has happened and on that morning it might have been cold to the touch and reminded her of the cold touch of death. For Mary and Jesus’ Disciples, the cold of the stone would have only left them with the same empty feeling inside as the emptiness of the tomb. In this case, “stone cold” was the end of the journey. But soon they learned that there was the other side of the stone that once they could see it, it would not be cold but warm with the love and the hope of an eternal life with their friend, teacher and now Savior. As we navigate this world, our work, our lives, we see both sides of the stone and we are given the choice on which side we want to stand. Jesus did not die for us to leave us on the cold side of the stone. He died and rose for us to stand and bathe in the warmth that is His love for us. So, today, let’s know what we need to know, do what we do well, and renew our faith and relationship with the One who gave all for us so we could stand on the warm side of the stone.
Reference: Matthew 27:59–60 (New Living Translation)