Lenten Meditation – April 10, 2011 – 5th Sunday in Lent

March 10, 2011 – 5th Sunday in Lent

Lessons: Ezekiel 37:1-14, Psalm 130, Romans 8:6-11, John 11:1-45

John 11:21-22 Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died. But even now I know that God will give you whatever you ask of him.”

The gospel lesson today tells the story of the raising of Lazarus. At many levels it’s a love story. It’s a story of two sisters that deeply grieve over the loss of their brother. They send word to Jesus that their brother is ill but Jesus waits to come to their aid until after Lazarus has passed away. His delay seems intentional as if to create a situation where the glory of God can be realized as a witness to those gathered. Jesus returns to Bethany to raise Lazarus from the dead, four days dead! It’s also a love story in that it allows Jesus to see for himself the outcome of his own upcoming suffering and death and perhaps to give him confidence that his trial too will not end in death, but that his stone will be rolled away and that God will call him forth into resurrected life. The parallels between the two stories are obvious: a grave that was a cave, a stone that needed to be rolled away. There are eye witnesses at both events who leave transformed and spread the good news to those around him. The story is also a lesson of hope. It tells me that whatever entombs my life is not bigger than God’s capacity and that nothing that I will ever face will end in death but can be used to be an expression of God’s grace and mercy. May this Lent lead to a lifetime of resurrections. Anonymous

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