Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Deeply Moved

Now Jesus had not yet come to the village, but was still at the place where Martha had met him. The Jews who were with her in the house, consoling her, saw Mary get up quickly and go out. They followed her because they thought that she was going to the tomb to weep there. When Mary came where Jesus was and saw him, she knelt at his feet and said to him, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who came with her also weeping, he was greatly disturbed in spirit and deeply moved. He said, “Where have you laid him?” They said to him, “Lord, come and see.” Jesus began to weep. So the Jews said, “See how he loved him!” But some of them said, “Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man have kept this man from dying?”

Then Jesus, again greatly disturbed, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone was lying against it. Jesus said, “Take away the stone.” Martha, the sister of the dead man, said to him, “Lord, already there is a stench because he has been dead four days.” Jesus said to her, “Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?” So they took away the stone. And Jesus looked upward and said, “Father, I thank you for having heard me. I knew that you always hear me, but I have said this for the sake of the crowd standing here, so that they may believe that you sent me.” When he had said this, he cried with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” The dead man came out, his hands and feet bound with strips of cloth, and his face wrapped in a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Unbind him, and let him go.” John 11:30-44

Sometimes, we can loose sight of the love in our lives and the miracles that come from being loved. When I was a child we used to kid about the shortest verse in the Bible -"Jesus wept". In Sunday School we got prizes for memorizing Bible verses, so our Mom taught us this one and several other short one also. It was a game for us then but has become a wealth of knowledge and story, memorized and part of our beings. The compassion of God through Jesus is soaked in deep. We are now in some was part of the miraculous story of God's divine compassion, God's presence at our worst, God making life again where there was none.

This story of the raising of Lazarus is essential to our understanding of Jesus and his ministry. He traveled around to many places, but found an intimate and familial connection where ever he went. His was close friends with Martha, Mary and Lazarus. He loved them as brothers and sisters, like family he knew their story, their joys and their sorrows. And he came to bring back life to Lazarus because God is always overwhelming us with compassion, restoration and healing. We are never far from God's love and miracles, even in our darkest hours.

Today I ask God to help me look for the love and compassion of God that is present in the here and now. We are surrounded at all times with God's love and compassion, breaking down our walls of sorrow and the tombs we hide away in. May we live as those who expect God's love in our midst in our darkest hours.

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