Aug. 1, 2014
When Mary reached the place where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet and said, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.”
For the last several days, I have wanted to post an update about the baby robin eggs. About a week ago, four little robins hatched! We’ve tried to respect Momma Robin and not get too close.
The babies loved their Momma. Every time Momma Robin came to the nest, their little beaks poked over the nest’s top, wide open for food. Momma Robin would get a worm, chew it up and carefully drop tiny little bits into each of her offspring’s mouths. Heart-warming moments.
Until today. I was coming back from a run when Rick flagged me down. He wanted to know if I’d seen the disaster in the back yard. My heart sank. I knew there was trouble on the patio.
An empty nest lay on the ground. The little babies did not survive whatever happened. Momma Robin quickly caught our attention. She was one angry wet hen, die-bombing near Rick’s head, squawking loudly the entire time. She was mad, angry and upset.
Siblings Mary, Martha and Lazarus were close friends of Jesus. He visited their house, ate dinner with them and maybe even considered them family. One day, Lazarus got very sick. Jesus wasn’t too far away. Word was sent to him but he stayed away an exhausting three days. By the time Jesus comes lollygagging into town, Lazarus’ body is already in the tomb. The sisters are mad, angry and upset that Jesus didn’t come and heal Lazarus. He’d healed so many others. Why not their brother?
When Jesus finally arrives, Mary’s words attack him like shrapnel, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” Mary is playing the blame-game. She lashes out at the One whom she feel has hurt her and not fully loved her brother. Jesus sees her hurt and has compassion for her. As tears spill down his cheeks, he asks to see where Lazarus has been laid.
Ever lashed out at God, mad, angry and upset when something turned out differently than you expected? Ever screamed through tears, “Lord, if you had been here ….” and walked away from God because you felt God had walked away from you? This may describe Ms. Momma Robin this morning.
My compassionate husband cleaned up the remains of the little babies and gave them a proper burial. Momma Robin didn’t come after him but seemed to move on.
Mary found joy again when Jesus brought Lazarus back to life. Evil things will happen in this world. This is reality. When suffering happens, it is imperative that we find joy again. Otherwise, we become victim to anger.
Lord God, how many times we have focused our anger towards you when something turned out differently than we preferred. Help us to develop a clearer understanding of why suffering happens in this world. Remind us anew that you never leave us even when we get upset with you. Amen.
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