Can Dead Things Be Resurrected?
I had given up. The dream was put to rest never to be pursued again. I was done. The months had turned into years and our only child was eight. It was time to hang it up. I’d had enough of doctors and treatments. The desire for a bigger family was over. Infertility and miscarriage had blocked the path for years. It seemed unfair that abortion, abandonment and abuse prospered when my arms remained empty. But the dream had died, and I stopped hoping for a miracle. Disappointment left me with a heavy heart. It’s true: Hope deferred makes the heart sick.
Ironically, it happened shortly after we rummaged through our attic to purge all the left-over baby items. I was pregnant at 37. The baby bed was long gone. Along with the stroller, high chair, car seat, and toys. We were completely unprepared for another child…but oh so ready. We literally shouted the news from the house top. There was dancing in the streets (so to speak) when we finally shared the news. My friends gave me another baby shower and the joy was contagious. This was our miracle and everyone celebrated with us. It’s also true: A longing fulfilled is a tree of life.
I had lost hope for another child. Yet, the Lord resurrected the dream I thought was dead. He gave me the desire of my heart when I thought it was too late.
John 11:1-44 excerpts
Now a man named Lazarus was sick. He was from Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha. So the sisters sent word to Jesus, “Lord, the one you love is sick.” 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.” Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. So when he heard that Lazarus was sick, he stayed where he was two more days, and then he said to his disciples, “Let us go back to Judea.”
On his arrival, Jesus found that Lazarus had already been in the tomb for four days. Now Bethany was less than two miles from Jerusalem, and many Jews had come to Martha and Mary to comfort them in the loss of their brother. When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went out to meet him, but Mary stayed at home. “Lord,” Martha said to Jesus, “if you had been here, my brother would not have died. But I know that even now God will give you whatever you ask.”
Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.” Martha answered, “I know he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.” Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die;
Then Jesus said, “Did I not tell you that if you believed you would see the glory of God?” So they took away the stone. Then Jesus looked up and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. I knew that you always hear me but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here that they may believe that you sent me.
When he had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen and a cloth around his face. Jesus said, “Take off the grave clothes and let him go.”
Questions to Consider:
1. Why did Jesus delay going to Lazarus after he got word that he was sick? When have you experienced God’s delays and what resulted?
2. What are Martha’s first words to Jesus when he arrives on the scene? Have you ever questioned why God didn’t prevent something in your life?
3. What is the I AM declaration of Jesus in this story? How can you apply who Jesus is to your present circumstances?
4. For what reason does Jesus thank the Father before commanding Lazarus to come forth? How might others benefit from your wait?
5. What dead things need resurrecting in your life? Do you believe Jesus can restore life to your hopeless situations?
It’s so easy to lose hope when nothing is happening. Once a dream dies (or a relationship, or a business opportunity), we think it’s dead and gone. That there’s no use praying because, well…it’s too late.
It’s never too late where Jesus is concerned. Don’t give up when you face delays. Just as Jesus resurrected Lazarus, He’s able to raise up and restore hopeless situations. Remember what Jesus said: I am the Resurrection and the Life.