Jesus wept. [John 11:35]
Before you do anything else, I encourage you to go read John 11:1-44 here. You’ll need to read it in order to really understand what we’re talking about today.
In our last blog post, Avery did an amazing job of unpacking the glory of Jesus as God. He explained how Jesus used His power to show a Godly compassion by multiplying the loaves and fish and feeding thousands of people. Today, we’re going to study Jesus in a different light. Today, I want to look at how while Jesus is completely God, He is also completely human.
When Jesus was on this earth, He obviously did some things that were not a part of the average human experience: miracles, His resurrection, the ascension, etc. However, He also had some remarkably human experiences. He had friends. He ate food. He went to parties. He had a literal job. In many ways, Jesus was a very normal guy. And I think the ways that Jesus chose to be human are what draw me into Him more than just about anything.
I think that when looking at the story of Lazarus, it’s important to note that Jesus never worried. Because He was Jesus, He actually knew the entire time that his friend would rise from the dead. In verses 4, 11, and 23, He says that Lazarus would live again. And while Jesus knew that Lazarus would live again, He still was totally human in this story.
When Jesus arrived at the grave, He saw Mary and others weeping and wailing over the death over their loved one. The Bible says that at the sight of this, He became deeply troubled. And then He wept.
I cannot overstate how impactful I think this is. The entire time, Jesus knew that Lazarus would walk and live again. He is God. He knew the whole story before it was even written, because He Himself wrote this story. Yet because Jesus is fully human, He also grieved. He experienced the pain of a loved one dying. And He wept.
So easily Jesus could have skipped the weeping, the wailing, the grief, the sorrow, the sadness. He could have walked right into that grave the second He arrived and woken Lazarus up. But because of Jesus’ deep, deep compassion and love and humanity, He simply wept.
He joined in with what His friends were going through. He did not condemn them for not having faith. He did not step to the side to allow them to grieve while He waited with joy knowing that Lazarus would soon wake up. In that moment, Jesus was simply human and mourned over the death of His friend who He loved very, very much.
One of my absolute favorite things about God is that He is understanding. He empathizes greatly. His compassion runs deeper than you and I can comprehend. And I think that a part of this is because God Himself has walked on this earth. He has been human. He gets it.
So, when you are going through something hard, God does not expect you to be all happy and celebratory the entire time. If you are weeping, God sees you, and He weeps with you. When you are troubled, God’s heart is troubled. When you feel these emotions, God does not ask you to run from your humanity. Rather, according to this Scripture, He meets you right there in it and has a compassion for you that is oh so deep.
After the mourning
Now, we do have to note that after Jesus wept, He then went on to bring Lazarus back to life. He didn’t lose His hope in the midst of His mourning. He mourned, but then He stepped into the sweet reality that had been promised to Him.
I say this because we don’t need to sit in our sadness. Yes, when we mourn, God mourns. When we weep, Jesus weeps. Yet, we don’t have to stay there. We see the hope as Jesus did, and we move forward.
So, if you are going through a hard time or circumstance, please do not feel like you aren’t allowed to feel pain. Rather, invite God into that with you because He will meet you there. But once you go through that mourning and sadness, allow God to show you where the hope is and to move from brokenness. Because God has that for you in the midst of every hard circumstance and wants to walk with you, hand-in-hand, into every good thing He has for you. Just like how Jesus wept with for His friend, and then gave way to hope and invited Lazarus back into life.
God, I thank You that You meet me where I am. I acknowledge that You do not condemn me for my humanity, but rather you meet me within it. God, for any painful circumstance, I invite You into the brokenness even if that’s hard for me. Lord, after we weep together, will You show me where the hope is? Will You please take my hand and guide me there? I need You. I love You. In Jesus’ sweet and precious name I pray. Amen.