Miriam is a courageous woman of Jerusalem who joins her son, James, as he follows Jesus in his ministry through Judea, Galilee, and Samaria. Her gift of maternity was both a physical and a spiritual motherhood. As a mother, she carried the message of Jesus to her children, Anah and Joses—her greatest hope was that they, too, would believe in the Messiah. But that wasn’t all. On that early Sunday morning, Miriam was was given the incredible gift of carrying the message of our Lord’s resurrection to his disciples and in essence, to the whole world.
Spiritual motherhood can mean many things: teaching religious education, befriending someone older or younger, praying for a friend in need. How have you experienced spiritual motherhood in your life? Tell me about it in the comments below.
Miriam rubbed a hand over her tired eyes. Wasn’t it always such in the life of a woman . . . of a mother? Waiting and praying. If this pain—this agony—of Jesus’ death was indeed not the end but a beginning as her ancient mother promised, when would the beginning begin? How long, O Lord, will we wait for your answer?
Miriam encounters Jesus on Easter Sunday:
They ran to the outskirts of the garden before Miriam stopped and turned. The open tomb, the guards lying on the ground . . . she hadn’t imagined it. Miriam willed her legs to stop shaking. An angel, they had seen an angel. Who would believe them? Peter? James? No, they would scoff, even at Mary Magdalene. For why would an angel come to women?
“What should we do?” she gasped.
Mary Magdalene looked around them, her breath coming fast. “Perhaps the gardener . . . ?” She motioned toward a man standing beside a copse of cedar trees.
Miriam followed her gaze. Where had he been when they arrived? He seemed to be waiting for something, watching them. Mary Magdalene approached him. “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where?”
“Mary,” the man said. As he spoke the word, it was if the light had fallen upon him and illuminated his face for her to see. Miriam’s breath stopped in her throat. This man was no stranger—it was Jesus!
Mary Magdalene cried out—a joyful, surprised cry—and fell to her knees. “Rabbouni!”
Miriam dropped to her knees, her hands reaching out him, her joy leaping ahead of her thoughts. Jesus! He was alive. How could he be alive? The man she served, the rabbi she loved. Not dead but alive.
Encounter Jesus more fully this Lent and follow Huldah’s story in Walk In Her Sandals, Experiencing Christ’s Passion Through The Eyes of Women. To participate in the Lenten Book Club, including a beautiful reflection on Chapter 4 of Walk In Her Sandals, go to