Thursday, April 26, 2007

After Good Friday

At the close of the Good Friday service, you challenged us to meditate on what it would have been like for the disciples to see their Leader put to death. So, I put myself in the place of Mary (Martha and Lazarus' sister), and came up with the following:


What a Passover this has been! Martha and I have had so much preparation to do. This year’s celebration meant so much more than in the past. We’ve had so many blessings!

When our brother Lazarus died, we hoped Jesus would be there to say good-bye before we had to bury him. Those two had always been such good friends. Martha and I even sent someone to find Jesus to tell him that Lazarus was dying, but he didn’t come right away. And when he did arrive, it was too late. We had already buried my brother.

My sister was very gracious to the Teacher when he arrived to our home. But not me. I couldn’t help but think that if he had been here sooner, Lazarus would still be alive. After all, he gave sight to a blind man; surely he could save the life of a sick friend whom he loved dearly. I could see the sadness in his eyes. In fact, he did what I’ve seen few men ever do. He wept. When I took him to the tomb where we placed Lazarus, he asked something most sane men wouldn’t ask. He wanted the stone rolled back. Is he a mad man? My brother - Jesus’ friend - died four days ago! Doesn’t he realize how bad it will smell? And what does Jesus think he can do now anyway? Make Lazarus get up and walk?!?

But that’s exactly what he did. All Jesus had to do was speak. “Lazarus, come out!” And out comes my brother, who we knew was dead, walking! A mad man couldn’t bring a dead man back to life, especially after that much time!

I remember the first time Jesus came to the house. Martha is such the homemaker. She had to make sure everything was perfect for our guest. But I couldn’t help but sit at the Teacher’s feet and take in every word from him. Martha couldn’t stand it. She even asked Jesus to send me back to the kitchen! Do you know what he said? “Martha, Martha," my Lord answered, "you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her."

But it was taken away from me. Jesus is dead. He did what only God could do with Lazarus, but couldn’t save himself. His mother and the other Mary anointed him and buried him, just like Martha and I did with Lazarus.

When Jesus first arrived at our home after we buried Lazarus, he said, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.” I could believe in that when Jesus was here.

I don’t know what to believe any more.

Praise be to God that we do not have to go through that confusion! He Is Risen! Hallelujah!

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