August 14, 2022 – Believe

Dear Madelyn,

There is something about God’s timing that can be comforting but also there are some days and some circumstances when you are in the thick of it and His timing seems so frustrating. Sometimes it can feel like he isn’t listening to you, like he’s abandoned you, and like he’s not doing something you are deeply praying for.

In these times, when you are waiting and walking through the valley of the shadow of death, Jesus is there waiting, weeping, and angry with you and for you. Sweet girl, as your mom I never want you to be in pain or grief but we live in a broken world so times like these will come and I want you to know that the beautiful thing about Jesus is he has already won over death and when we believe in him we have already seen His glory. He can take any loss, any grief, any pain and turn it into joy, into celebration, and victory.

John 11:4 When Jesus heard this, Jesus said, “This sickness will not end in death. No, it is for God’s glory so that God’s Son may be glorified through it.”

Today in church we studied and learned how Jesus felt and what he did when his dear friend Lazarus died in John 11:1-44. We got to see how Jesus waited two days when he heard the news that Lazarus was on his deathbed. We saw how once he arrived and Lazarus was already dead how Jesus claimed: “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die.” John 11:25 when others questioned why he didn’t come sooner and save his friend whom he loved.

We saw how at Lazarus’ grave site Jesus wept and mourned the loss of his friend. “Jesus wept.” John 11:35

We saw Jesus then get angry in remembering that from the beginning of time since Adam and Eve in their sin, we as a people have lived separate from our creator isolated from his glory. “Jesus, once more deeply moved come to the tomb.” John 11:38 Here the translation for “deeply moved” is best represented by anger or rage as he approaches the grave site.

But finally we see that Jesus has already won this battle over the grave and our souls as he calls for Lazarus to rise from his grave and he does.

“‘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 said this, Jesus called out in a loud voice, ‘Lazarus, come out!’ The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and cloth around his face. Jesus said to them, ‘Take off the grave clothes and let him go.’”

Anytime Jesus confronts death He has already won. When we believe in him we get to experience this glory for ourselves even in the waiting even in the death we already know that our God has won. In this story Jesus did not just go to say goodbye to his friend at his funeral… he went to say goodbye to funerals that separate us from him and our father forever.

Baby girl, I have been blessed to live a life where my valleys of death were claimed as Jesus’ victory even before I walked through them. My prayer for you is that you face these times with the strength, courage, and armor of belief in your savior Jesus. Even in the waiting, even in the doubt, I pray you come back to Him because He is where the joy it.



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