Although Jesus loved Martha, Mary, and Lazarus, he stayed where he was for the next two days and did not go to them. Finally after two days, he said to his disciples, “Let’s go to Judea again.”
Mary and Martha had sent their friend Jesus a message about the critical condition of their brother, Lazarus, and their urgent need for his help: “Lord, the one you love is very sick” (). But instead of rushing off to Bethany, Jesus stayed where he was for two days before responding to Mary and Martha’s plea. When he did arrive, he raised Lazarus from the dead in a magnificent display of his power.
Just as Mary and Martha struggled when Jesus answered their prayers for Lazarus in a time and way different from what they had expected, we get frustrated when the Lord delays in coming to us and answering our prayers.
As it did for the grieving sisters, two days (or two months or two years) of waiting can seem like an eternity to us. But in the midst of the “delay,” God is not inactive. He is teaching us patience, perseverance, and faith and is planning to glorify himself in our circumstances. While we are waiting, he wants to cleanse our hearts and refocus us on Jesus. The Spirit always knows what will glorify God, and we can trust him when we’re in the waiting room.
LORD, help me to wait for you in hope and perseverance, knowing that you will come. Remind me that your plan for Lazarus and his sisters did not suffer because of your delay—the delay was part of your plan so that your power would be demonstrated in an even greater way. Grant me patience and faith in the waiting rooms of life yet to be.
GOD OFTEN DELAYS HIS RESPONSE OUT OF LOVE, AS HE WORKS ALL THINGS TOGETHER FOR GOOD. Jeanne Zornes
Shalom – WDI