Of all the things we believe to be true about the God we cannot see, the notion of being resurrected from the dead is the one thing that calls for complete faith.
Most people will grant that Jesus was right about how we should live our lives. But those unexplainable moments — a healing that mystifies medicine, a turn of events that seems to have no earthly explanation, a sunrise too beautiful for human understanding — remind us that, with God, all things are possible.
Taste and see how God’s acts of grace can strengthen our faith when we are in need of resurrection.
But some of them said, “Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man have kept this man from dying?” Then Jesus, again greatly disturbed, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone was lying against it. Jesus said, “Take away the stone.” Martha, the sister of the dead man, said to him, “Lord, already there is a stench because he has been dead four days.” Jesus said to her, “Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?”
Still focused on what they have seen with their own eyes — that Jesus has healed the sick and given sight to the blind — the crowd whispers, questioning Jesus’ character. Why does he choose perfect strangers for miracles and then deny healing to his close friend? Again Jesus is described as greatly disturbed, emphasizing the depth of his fully human emotion, even as he is about to show that he is also fully divine.
When he orders the stone moved, the mourners wonder what he can be thinking, to expose them to decay and death. Jesus may even be a little impatient: "Haven’t I told you that if you have faith, you’ll see amazing things?" There is no description of the crowd’s reaction, but we can imagine that they have no answer because they are holding their breath. And in spite of all Jesus’ miracles, they are unable even to imagine what will happen next.
Just so, when our instincts tell us to expect the worst, this story helps us understand that faith can make a difference.
Dear God, help me to remember that your answers to my prayers can sometimes be beyond my ability to imagine, and give me faith to trust you. Amen.
Go now and offer comfort and grace to a world in need of resurrection, certain in the knowledge that the God who causes resurrection is with you.