“When Jesus therefore saw her weeping, and the Jews who came with her also weeping, He was deeply moved in spirit and was troubled, and said, ‘Where have you laid him?’ They said to Him, ‘Lord, come and see.’ Jesus wept. So the Jews were saying, ‘See how He loved him.’”
John 11: 33-36
Meditate or Reflect
In this third segment of our journey with the fruit of the Spirit, we turn to restoring and repairing any spiritual fruit that has endured a loss or relational wound. For instance, when we have endured a loss with love, or had joy stolen, or peace disrupted, and so on; any type of loss may cause us to become guarded or hesitant to experience love, joy, peace, kindness again. But we must seek to live fully in the Spirit, so let us turn to love.
The verse for today is about the death of Lazarus, a dear friend to Jesus. And, Jesus, who is God and man and sinless, shows us what grief looks like. He loved Lazarus, and also his sisters who were grieving Lazarus. And Jesus meets them in their grief and weeps with them. There are times in life where we have experienced love and loss, or we have loved a dream that never came to be, or we loved something and prayed for it before it ever existed. Sometimes love and loss looks like it did for Mary, and Martha, and Jesus: the loss of a friend, a sibling, a parent, a child. Sometimes love and loss is experienced through a divorce, or not getting the career you wanted. Sometimes love and loss is experienced in the desire to be married yet remaining single, or the desire to have a child yet remaining childless. If you have loved and experienced loss, Jesus meets you in it, and He holds you in your grief. The rest of the story of Lazarus assures us that for those who know Jesus, He will raise the dead to life, and we will experience restored love despite our loss.