Though it may be hard to believe, considering Jesus’ busy ministry of three years, He enjoyed good times with friends such as sisters Mary and Martha and their brother, Lazarus. Jesus had been a guest in their home and enjoyed their hospitality. Certainly, Jesus shared with them what life in God’s kingdom would be like and no doubt stories of day-to-day life would have been told. While on a long journey, Jesus learned that Lazarus was dying and by the time He arrived at their home, Lazarus had already died and been buried. Martha was so sad, and she was convinced that if Jesus had been there, He could have saved her brother.
Jesus tried to comfort her and told her that Lazarus would live again. She believed in the resurrection and life after death, but she greatly mourned her brother. Mary was very sad too. Like Martha, she was convinced that if Jesus had been there, He could have saved her brother. As Jesus, Mary, and Martha had shared laughter, now they shared tears. Jesus wept as He stood at the entrance to the tomb, and then He told people to roll away the stone that sealed the entrance. The people hesitated but did, as Jesus commanded.
Jesus said, ‘Lazarus, come out!’ The people were frightened and amazed when Lazarus, came out of the tomb. Since his hands and feet were all wrapped up in the burial clothes, the people had to help Lazarus. When the people saw Lazarus alive again, they laughed and sang and danced. Many people that day believed Jesus would bring new life to all people.
Once again Mary, Martha, Lazarus and Jesus knew good times. No doubt they shared a meal. They could not help themselves from laughing and rejoicing that Lazarus was alive again. They also were able to affirm their belief in the resurrection and life after death, thanks to their friend, Savior and Lord Jesus.
O Lord, help us to realize that as You shared good times with Your friends Mary, Martha, and Lazarus, so You enjoy our celebrations. Remind us too, that You share our sorrows and wish to comfort us. Most of all, we give You thanks for the gifts of resurrection and eternal life through Our Savior Jesus, in whose name, we pray. Amen.