They thought Jesus failed them. Their beloved friend, their precious Jesus. He said he would save their brother Lazarus, but he did not. Lazarus died, and Mary and Martha were left to bury their brother. They mourned. They cried. They hurt.
When Jesus saw [Mary] weeping, and the Jews who had come along with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in spirit and troubled. “Where have you laid him?” he asked.
“Come and see, Lord,” they replied. Jesus wept.
But Jesus did not fail them, and he did not abandon them. Jesus hurt with them. Though he knew God would bring Lazarus back to life, Jesus still hurt. He wept. He mourned. He was there in the middle of their pain.
Jesus, once more deeply moved, came to the tomb. It was a cave with a stone laid across the entrance. “Take away the stone,” he said.
“But, Lord,” said Martha, the sister of the dead man, “by this time there is a bad odor, for he has been there four days.”
Then Jesus said, “Did I not tell you that if you believe, you will see the glory of God?”
So they took away the stone. Then Jesus looked up and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here, that they may believe that you sent me.”
When he had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face. Jesus said to them, “Take off the grave clothes and let him go.” (John 11)
In the middle of our pain, it is hard to see that God is good. Sometimes his plan seems so far from that. It feels like he is the one causing our pain. Dearest friends, I know this life is hard. Picking up a cross means picking up a cross. It is hard. It hurts. We cry. We kick and scream and we want out. But God is there. He holds us gently. He cries with us. He hurts with us.
Life is hard, but believe with me that God is good.
When we believe that God works all things for good and for His glory, though it is difficult to see past our painful circumstances, we will see the glory of God.