He waited two more days. That’s what Jesus did when he was told his beloved friend was gravely ill. He waited.
This morning I was reading in the Gospel of John, eleventh chapter, and the Holy Spirit whispered a little tidbit to my spirit. Verses five and six of that passage read: Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister, and Lazarus. So, when he heard that he was sick He stayed two more days where He was.
When I read those words, I paused to ponder. That’s when the Holy Spirit whispered, “He could have responded by going to the bedside of Lazarus immediately, or spoken the healing word from where He was. Lazarus would have been healed and everyone would have been happy. But He had a better plan. He planned to raise Lazarus from the dead. Not only would He raise him, but He would do so after Lazarus had been dead four days!”
Have you been waiting for a promise to be fulfilled? Has it been so long the dream seems to have died? Perhaps it is long dead. Rejoice! God has a better plan.
No really, rejoice! Repeat after me, “Rejoice oh my soul!” Or in other words, “Hey self! Rejoice!”
God’s timing is always best, and His plans are always better than ours. Why? Because He loves us. It’s who He is, and He will always move on our behalf in love. He loved Martha, Mary and Lazarus, but He didn’t act as they expected. He acted in a way the world would have called selfish, unkind and inconsiderate. But He was listening to His Father’s voice, not the voice of the world. He loved His friends so much that He wanted His best for them.
Can’t you just hear Him? “Papa, we’ve been saving this for something really special. Can we do it now? Can we? I love them so much and this would be such a brilliant thing to give them. I know they won’t understand at first, but they will be amazed by You when it happens!”
So He waited. He waited two more days, and by the time He reached Bethany, Lazarus had been dead four days. I do not believe He was untouched by the grief of His dear friends. I believe He was deeply touched by it. But He knew their sorrow would soon be turned to joy.
When I returned to the house from enjoying early morning ‘coffee with Jesus’ in the garden, I said to my husband. “God could have sent a buyer for our house right away. But He has a better plan. I don’t know what it is, but when it happens it will be His best and it will be brilliant!”
He nodded and said, “Okay, sounds good!” He’s sorta used to my revelatory outbursts.
So, for those of us who have been waiting, and waiting, and waiting, I say, “God has a better plan. His plans are better than our plans, better than anything we can ask or think. And they are brilliant!” You see, we may not always know what God is doing, but we can always trust WHO HE IS. He changes not. He always wants to give us His best. On our worst day He gives us the grace to endure. On our best day He gives us grace to enjoy. His grace is always sufficient, and His loving kindness is absolutely relentless.
And while we wait, can we invest in knowing the who of God? Who does He want to be for me right now, right where I am? Does He want to show me a Father’s love? Does He want to show me what it means to be His Beloved? Does He want to be my peace? My joy? My delight? Does He want to dance with me? Sing with me? Ask Him!
“My precious Loving Father, I am overwhelmed with the wonder of who You are. I want Your best more than I want my now. And while I wait, can we share more of who You want to be for me? I want to know You more, I want to hear what You hear and see what You see. I know I live under the light of Your smile, teach me what that looks like Papa! I want to know how You see me, so I can begin to cooperate with You in becoming that woman. Then when Your best comes, I will be able to give it my best. Now that would be brilliant!”
Ephesians 3:20-21 Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.
I have heard this teaching before so reading it right now is a blessing. When I was at the leadership summit my Dad passed away. I stayed there, and the t third day after God whispered, the time of mourning is over. That was hard to imagine because I am well aware of the importance of grieving. But I had been grieving this relationship for years while he was alive and I had said my faithful daughter goodbyes a couple weeks earlier. I was released from extended grieving. It was a gift of Freedom. Yes, the best is yet to come.