Suffering and Glory

“Jesus said to her, “Did I not tell you that if you believed you would see the glory of God?” – John 11:40

We love the message of grace and the truth of our rest in Christ. But we still have to live. We still have to face suffering, our own and others’. We are left with any number of questions why and what does it mean to God?

Then we read the story of Lazarus. The friend of Jesus. When he hears that he is sick and in need of healing, Jesus waits. Long enough for Lazarus to die. Imagine the sisters’ pain in the waiting for the friend, the One they knew could heal, to come and save their brother. How differently would they want it to play out in that moment, during those four long days?

I do that with suffering. I want to instruct God how he would be most glorified, and it usually has to do with a quick resolution or solution to my problem. But he continues to wait. And I trust that because I know that Lazarus lived again. And I know that Jesus lived again.

“I don’t know what you are suffering right now, but he does. He is not capricious, picking petals off a daisy: “I think I’ll help them, I think I won’t.” He’s bearing your suffering and has entered into every bit of it, but he is waiting. Perhaps your deliverance will come before you take your next breath; perhaps it will come as you take your last. I don’t know. But I do know that he made a promise to you: if you believe you will see the glory of God (John 11:40). Just imagine that. Hang on to him in faith and imagine that you will see the glory of God! Your eyes will be opened to see how truly wise, powerful, and good he is. Somehow, in some way hidden to your weak eyes, your suffering is making a way for that to happen. I don’t know when your “Lazarus” will rise, but when he does, you will see something you never could have imagined. You will see God’s glory, you will begin to see him as he is, and then you will understand.”

Lenten devotion from Comforts from the Cross by Elyse Fitzpatrick. Day 15.

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