Flourish | Day Seven
By: Megan Gover
Warning: Today might uproot some deep pain in your life. Before we dive into the loss of Martha and Mary, ask the Lord to make His presence incredibly felt as you study today!
Read John 11:1-16.
What details do we know about the following people in this story?
Lazarus is sick--deathly sick. When the news finally spreads to Jesus, what is His response? Did he leave in a hurry or take his time getting to Bethany?
Why do you think He did that? Why is this significant? (Hint: verse 14)
What was Thomas' remark referring to in verse 16?
Like the disciples alluded to in verse 8, the Jews had apparently tried to stone Jesus while He was in Judea. The disciples were essentially saying, "Rabbi, are you cruisin' for a bruisin'"? However, Thomas loving says he will go to die with Jesus if this is the result.
Continue reading John 11:17-37.
How long had Lazarus been dead when Jesus arrived?
What was his sister, Martha's, response to Jesus' arrival?
Her reaction gets me every time. "If you had been here..." Am I alone in muttering those words? I think back to so many times in my life and thought:
"If you had been here, my grandma wouldn't have died."
"If you had been here, my granddad wouldn't have had cancer."
"If you had been here, you could spare me from this circumstance..."
What are some of your "what if" moments? What things in your life have brought such deep pain that you question the presence and timing of the Lord?
Though Martha questioned Jesus' arrival time, she confidently declared, "But I know that even now God will give you whatever you ask for."
How did Jesus respond to her confidence in the Lord?
Do you believe Him when He says He's the resurrection and the life? Why or why not?
What does this mean for believers today?
What was Mary's response to Jesus' arrival? How did Jesus respond?
In desert seasons filled with pain, heartache, and sorrow, it sometimes feel like Christ is distant. But, nothing could be further from the truth! The shortest sentence in the Bible perhaps conveys some of the deepest truths about Jesus. Our God isn't a God who just sees us in the midst of pain and laughs at our sorrow. He invites us to draw Him near, to comfort us, to love us, to hold us.
Though we don't physically have Jesus to reach out and hug us, we have the Holy Spirit who dwells within us as our comforter and provider.
Continue reading John 11:38-44.
Why does Jesus say this to the Father in verse 42?
What does Jesus say when the tomb is opened? What happens?
Jesus called Lazarus' name--who had been dead several days--and he walked out of the grave! Can you imagine the sight? Wrapped like a mummy, smelling anything but fresh, he walks out with new breathe in his lungs. Jesus invites him to take off his grave clothes and begin living again.
Therefore, what takeaways resonate with you? What truths apply to our lives today?
Here were some of mine:
- Christ mourns in our sadness and meets us His with Presence. Though certain situations in desert seasons don't happen the way we like, we can find comfort in knowing Jesus didn't any boundary come between visiting "the one he loved." (verse 3)
Jesus doesn’t spare us from trials, but He shows His power through them. Like Jesus told his disciples, He showed his authority over death to declare being the resurrection and the life. In the same way, the Lord shows us his glory by reminding us He is over all.
His time is not like ours. God is working in the midst of our waiting. ALWAYS. Sometimes we are waiting and asking for things that God isn’t saying no to, but rather "not yet."
So, how do we flourish when in trial seasons? We must wait on the Lord.
Read Psalm 34:18.
Who does the verse apply to? When you are brokenhearted and crushed in spirit, the Lord close to you!
We must push into His promises and truth and not pull away from His presence. Our natural reaction is to pull away from the Lord in times of trial. But, these are the seasons we must push in and press in to His presence.
Lastly, we must know God's glory comes after grieving.
Read 2 Corinthians 1:3-4. In what things has the Lord comforted you? How did that enable you to comfort others?
God never wastes anything—especially our pain. The Lord redeems and mends some of our brokenness through letting our story offer hope and heal others Therefore, the next season of pain and heartache that comes around, know the Lord sees, the Lord knows, the Lord heals. But, it only comes through His timing, His story, and serves only His purpose.