This is an especially touching event in the life of Jesus and one of his dear friends. It warms my heart to read about how Jesus (God’s only Son) lived on this earth in a human body just like ours and experienced the same things we experience such as love and grief. He had a dear friend named Lazarus who had two sisters, Mary and Martha. Jesus loved this family very much, like we love good friends who are like family to us. Well, Lazarus died and the Bible tells us that Jesus cried with Mary and others.
When a friend of mine died from cancer leaving behind a three year old daughter and two sons, the oldest son being 13 and the age of our daughter at the time, it was really sad. She and I would have our best visits during swimming lessons for our kids, and I really missed her. Jesus understood my grief and sadness because he lost a friend, as told to us in the Bible in the book of John, chapter 11:
2Mary went to where Jesus was. Then as soon as she saw him, she knelt at his feet and said, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.”
33When Jesus saw that Mary and the people with her were crying, he was terribly upset 34and asked, “Where have you put his body?”
They replied, “Lord, come and you will see.”
35Jesus started crying, 36and the people said, “See how much he loved Lazarus.
Note: Scripture from BibleGateway.com using the Contemporary English Version (usually I use the NIV Version)
This is not the end of the story! When Jesus went to the place where Lazarus was buried, Martha told Jesus that Lazarus had been dead for four days and his body had started to smell. Jesus told Martha, “Didn’t I tell you that if you had faith, you would see the glory of God?” And so Jesus called to Lazarus, and Lazarus walked out of the burial cave with the burial strips of cloth still on his body. Maybe some of the people there were freaking out, we don’t know. But those who had faith knew the power of God.
The people at that event in history definitely saw the glory of God! And what does this mean for us today? Jesus sympathizes with us when someone we love dies. He’s been there! He knows the sorrow and the pain of losing someone dear. It also means that we live in a world where God is in control. And even though he is the creator of the world and whole universe and everything in existence, He is also the God who loves us and cares about each one of us when we experience sorrow or sadness. Jesus told Martha, “…if you have faith,” and if we have faith then we will see God working in our lives!