John 11:4-6 – “When he heard this, Jesus said, “This sickness will not end in death. No, it is for God’s glory so that God’s Son may be glorified through it.” Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. Yet when he heard that Lazarus was sick, he stayed where he was two more days.”
Our culture has pulled us along more rapidly than ever. Hit the phone book, you’ll end up finding everything from Instant Bail Bonds to Instant Cash and One Hour Cleaners to One Hour Concrete Repair. This mentality isn’t just captured in the names of the businesses; it’s also imprisoned in the controlling expectations of society, even in our Christianity. The preference of our culture is to get it fast and get it right. The shortcuts provided by the electronics community allow us to listen to music, communicate with friends/family, watch television, download, send/receive e-mail, update our calendars, play games, etc…from one device. Possessing a device that allows you to save time is not necessarily problematic. The problem comes when you become controlled by a watch and not the Holy Spirit.
The difference between God’s time and our time is “known outcome”. God is the only one with known outcome; He is the only one who knows what tomorrow will bring or if we will even have a tomorrow (James 4:13-15). Jesus exhibits known outcome when it came to his boy, Lazarus, who had become deathly ill. When Jesus learned of Lazarus’ sickness, there was no instantaneous, across the map healing. In fact, verse six says Jesus “stayed where he was two more days.” There was no rush because Jesus said this sickness would not end in death, but in life. When Jesus got to the grave, Lazarus’ had been inside of it for a total of four days (v. 39). Jesus called him out of the grave and onlookers watched a dead man walk out of the tomb.
Although Lazarus was raised from the dead, this is where our basic human question comes into play. Martha told Jesus in verse 21, “If you had been here, my brother would not have died.” Why didn’t Jesus move more quickly? Maybe you’ve asked the same question of God, but in a different format. God, why didn’t you do something when I lost my job? God, I thought you loved me, why did this have to happen to me? The text spells it out: Jesus loved Lazarus. Lazarus’ death happened so all people would give glory to Jesus for bringing him back to life. In the same way, God loves you. There will be times in your life where it’s hard to see anything but the circumstance you are in.
Martha then said to Jesus, “But I know that even now God will give you whatever you ask.” Martha found peace in patience. Patience is understanding that you do not control the clock of the world. Let me spit it again: patience is understanding that you do not control the clock of the world. His desire is for you to wait on Him, patiently.
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” (Gal. 5:22-23)