Seeing Loved Ones Again


     “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 to 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.  He who believes in me shall live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.  Do you believe this?”  She said to him, “Yes Lord, I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, who is to come into the world.”  […]  Then Jesus, again groaning in Himself, came to the tomb.  It was a cave, and a stone lay against it.  Jesus said, “Take away the stone.”  Martha, the sister of him who was dead, said to Him, “Lord, by this time there is a stench, for he has been dead four days.”  Jesus said to her, “Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?”  Then they took away the stone from the place where the dead man was lying.  […] Now when He had said these things, He cried out with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come forth!”  And he who had died came out bound hand and foot with grave clothes, and his face was wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Loose him, and let him go.” (John 11: 21 – 27, & 38 – 44)


     Jesus asked Martha if she believed; prompting her to affirm that her faith was genuine.  The Lord walked with her to the tomb and ordered the stone to be rolled away.  He then commanded Lazarus to rise and come forth.  Lazarus was instantly restored to life.  As he staggered out of the tomb, Martha’s mourning heart was healed; she had been reunited with her dead brother.  Death has been causing extreme heartache and sorrow for thousands of years; it separates loved ones and is cold and remorseless.  Yet Jesus Christ has the power and authority to reunite those who have been separated.  There is no death for those who believe.

     Some years ago a South African man suffered a very serious asthma attack.  His family examined him and he was unresponsive; he no longer appeared to be breathing and had no pulse.  They arranged for the morgue to come and pick him up.  Upon arriving, the driver also examined the body; he as well declared the man to be dead.  After collecting the body, they returned to the morgue and placed the man in a freezer for 21 hours.  At some point the employees became frightened when they heard someone calling out from within the refrigerated compartment.  They were so terrified that they called the police to come and investigate.  Upon opening up the freezer, the police discovered the dead man was very much alive.  As the family members were mourning their loss and planning the funeral, they received a phone call informing them that their loved one was still alive; in an instant, their sadness had turned to joy.

     In much the same way, when a believer dies they appear lifeless; their bodies turn cold and begin to decay; yet they are alive with God in His Kingdom.  “To be absent from the body (is) to be present with the Lord” (2 Corinthians 5: 8.)  Have you felt the sting of death?  Have you experienced the sadness of a loss?  Is there someone you yearn to see again?  Take heart, for those who are gone are not truly lost.  If you are a believer and they also shared your faith, you will eventually be reunited with them.  Your Christian loved ones are waiting for you; and your reunion with them will be a joyful occasion.  Trust in God and you will see those whom you have lost.

  “Lord Father, we ask that You increase our faith; strengthen us, that we may trust in You.  We know that death has no power over us.  We are eternal and we will live forever with You in Your Kingdom.  May we follow Your son and trust in Your promises.  We know that some of our loved ones are with You; and we are eager to see them again in Your kingdom.  By the power of Your Holy Spirit, may we endure until that day.  We love You Father, we praise You, and we thank You, and we ask and pray all of these things, according to Your will, in Jesus Christ’s name, amen.”  God bless all of you!

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