Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Daily Office Reflection: Patience

Psalms 119:49-72 * 49, (53); Job 29:1,30:1-2,16-31; Acts 14:19-28; John 11:1-16

We have the beginning of the story of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead in our Gospel reading from John. Lazarus' sisters send word to Jesus that he is ill and dying, pleading that he come back to Judea. Jesus gets the message and waits two days before starting the journey, continuing whatever he was doing across the Jordan.

All I can think about is Martha and Mary, afraid, panicked, sad. Sad about the loss of their brother. Sad about Jesus not coming when they called him. I think that is one of the points of the story. Martha and Mary want to control Jesus and Jesus is having nothing to do with it. He is the one who is in charge. He is the one who knows what he is doing. And none of us like that. We want what we want when we want it, the saying goes.

God does not operate on our timeline this story tells us. And there will be times that we feel abandoned and alone. In those moments that come to us all, we need to remember that although we may feel violated, alone, forgotten....we are not. God's love for us is too great. Our focus needs to be elsewhere at those times, a gerry-working of how we look at our world and experiences. We can be confident that God is with us, always this story tells us. Just not in ways that we might expect.

Copyright 2010, The Rev. John F. Dwyer. All Rights Reserved


  1. Your description is very similar to various person's descriptions of dark night experiences. Dark night periods lead to a radical personal transformation. What the individual feels as loss and abandonment is the letting go of his/her own expectations of God and desires for how God is "supposed" to be acting. It is very difficult to let go of those things that have previously sustained and nurutured you, yet it is those very things that stand in the way of a deeper understanding of the mystery that is God. It is only through the tension of doubt and faith that you can know that God still is there.