‘Yes. Yes. Yes. I know who You are. I believe You are the Christ, the Son of God, who is to come into this world. I get that. Even now I know that whatever You ask of God, God will give you. But You didn’t come. I sent for you, and you didn’t come. You weren’t here.
Lord, if you would have been here, Lazarus would not be dead. If you loved us, if you cared about us, you could have asked the Father and He would hear you. But you didn’t. You didn’t do anything.’
I understand Martha’s pain. Lazarus was sick and she sent for Jesus, the One who was able to do something about it. Yet Jesus didn’t come when He heard the news. Instead, He remained where He was for another two days.
Oh yes. I understand Martha’s pain.
How could Jesus not come? How could He stay where He was when we needed Him here? He could have done something.
Isn’t That What We Wrestle With As Well?
We try to make sense of the fact that God is able to do all things. He has the power to change our circumstances and situations. He has the power to heal our loved ones. He has the riches to provide for our every need. He has the ability to turn the hearts of man and change our marriages. He has the power to work in the hearts of our prodigal children. He can do all things…
But Why Won’t He Do It For Me?
As a Christian reading the story of Lazarus in John 11, I can easily look at Martha disapprovingly. ‘Oh Martha, you’re so dramatic. You’re having another one of your bouts. Someone come and get Martha. She’s having another faith-crisis!’
You know, I don’t think Martha was having a faith-crisis. In her own words she admitted her belief that He was Jesus Christ, the Son of God. She acknowledged that her brother would rise in the resurrection at the last day.
I imagine Martha felt like us when we go through our struggles and people begin to tell us how we should “trust God. He has plans for your life. He will work all this out for your good and His glory.”
Yes. Yes. We know that. Martha knew that. But she was experiencing a heart-crisis. It’s that place where you know truth yet it doesn’t align with what you’re experiencing. It’s that place where sermons on what ‘a blessed life looks like’ are as salt added to our wounds. All we can think is “Jesus, if You loved me, You would have been here…”
Can I encourage you?
Jesus Moves As The Father Leads
Jesus staying where He was for two more days had nothing to do with His disregard for what was going on in the lives of Martha, Mary, and Lazarus. Instead, it was a display of God’s higher purposes. Jesus told His disciples, “I’m glad for your sakes that I was not there, that you may believe.”
When Martha came to Him with her soul questions, Jesus’ response was, “Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?”
Jesus moves as the Father leads and it’s always for His glory.
Jesus Cares About Your Situation
He empathizes with our pain. Mary, Martha’s sister, threw herself at His feet and cried, “Lord, if You had been here my brother would not have died.” John 11:33-35 tells us that when Jesus saw her and the Jews and he went to the tomb, He wept. This was a physical demonstration of His humanity. One commentary says Jesus wept when He saw the pain sin inflicted on those He loved.
Jesus cares about you. He cares about your pain.
Will You Trust Him?
God was using this experience to display His glory. He raised Lazarus from the dead and many of those who witnessed this believed in Him (John 11:45).
He is using your situation to demonstrate His glory. Can we believe that? Can we believe He loves us, He cares, and there is a purpose in all this? Can we go through our storms and hold on to the truth that He is good and He is good over our lives?
Can this truth anchor our souls that we might trust Him enough to fellowship with Him in the sufferings of Christ, sharing in his death, so that one way or another we can experience the resurrection from the dead? (Philippians 3:10-11).
My friend, if you believe, let that pain point back to Jesus. You will see the glory of God.
Praying and believing God with you,