“Jesus Wept’ John 11:35
There are numerous things that have moved me to tears. Most recently, it was my cancer diagnosis on March 9th. However slight or significant a situation may be, something can waken me to sob. While the length of my lamentation is irrelevant, the humanity of those moments aren’t.
That’s why today’s verse, albeit brief, captured my attention in a way never before done. As many times as I have read the account of Lazarus and his restoration, I couldn’t ignore the awesome reality of Jesus’s reaction to the one he loved (John 11:36).
Jesus Christ, the King of Kings, showed himself as Jesus the man, stirred to weeping. The Divine became starkly relatable. Not just in the story, but also in me. This all too impactful narrative washed over me with a fresh sobriety.
My Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, became more tangible in my faith walk through revisiting Lazarus’ story and, especially, hearing my cancer diagnosis. His powerful presence inside the confines of the doctor’s office embraced my collapsing composure. My Savior wasn’t repulsed by my ‘ugly’ cry as the news sunk in. Instead, he held me in his arms and cried similar tears.
As followers of Christ, we need not be reserved when life blindsides us. Just as we cling to Jesus for strength and courage, we can also find solace and safety within his protective walls to be unapologetically grief-stricken. Christ will never shame us for shedding tears. Instead, he will share in them. May we never be afraid to show our humanity to Jesus or others.
Precious Jesus, thank you for always being there for me whenever my world falls apart. That I never have to be reserved in my reaction to heart breaking news and can cry as much as needed, for as long as needed. I know you share those moments with me and soothe my heart when I’m all cried out. You are amazing and I love you. Praise your mighty name. Amen.
Our capacity to actually dwell in Christ’s presence is based upon knowing the true nature of God. If we see Him as a loving Father, we will draw near; if He seems to be a harsh judge, we will withdraw. Indeed, everything that defines us is influenced by our perception of God.
If we do not believe God cares about us, we will be overly focused on caring for ourselves. If we feel insignificant or ignored by God, we will exhaust ourselves by seeking significance from men. However, once we realize that God truly loves us, that He desires we draw near to Him, a door opens before us into His presence. Here, in the shelter of the Most High, we can find rest and renewed power for our souls.
God’s love is not a reality distant from our needs. The Bible reveals that Lord is “touched with the feeling of our infirmities” Hebrews 4:15 (KJV). He feels the pain of what we experience on earth. He participates in the life we live, for “in Him we live, and move and have our being” Acts 17:28( KJV). He is not removed from our need; we are His body. He is one with us.
The truth is, we are not alone in our battles. However, if we believe we are alone—if we accept the lie that God does not care—our darkened thinking will isolate us from the loving commitment of God.
Beloved, even in our times of rebellion, the heart of God is not far. Consider the Lord’s relationship with Israel. Though Israel had sinned and was suffering oppressive consequences, the Lord wasn’t far. We read that when the Lord “could bear the misery of Israel no longer” He raised up deliverers Judges 10:16. God wasn’t distant; He was with them, actually bearing their very misery!
At Lazarus’ tomb, Jesus wept. Jesus knew He was going to raise Lazarus; He knew it six days before He called Lazarus back from death. He wept because they were weeping.
Do you know that the Spirit of God actually feels our heartache? He is with us in our conflicts and near us in our fears. At the tomb of Lazarus, some would suggest that Christ’s weeping was really over the unbelief of His disciples. I think not. When the Lord wept over Lazarus, those who saw Christ saw a man touched by the sorrows of others. They remarked, “Behold how He loved him!” John 11:36.
Our healing comes when we behold how He loves us. We are raised from the dead when He comes to our tomb and calls us by name out of death.
We must personalize God’s love. He gave His Son for my sins, His word for my guidance and His Spirit for my strength. If the Almighty is for me, who can be against me?
Dear friend, with wide-eyed wonder, let us behold how He loves us, and be healed of our isolation.
If you don’t know God and his forgiveness and would like to start living a life where he is at your centre, you can start that journey today with a prayer:
Lord Jesus, I want to trust you from now on. Thank You for dying on the cross for my sins. I open the door of my life and receive You as my Savior and Lord. Thank You for forgiving my sins and giving me eternal life. Take control of my life. Make me be the person You want me to be. Thank you for enabling me to trust you in these uncertain times. Amen.