they prayed and cried out for Him to come. if He had come four days earlier, their brother would not have died. but now it was too late. their brother was dead, wrapped in grave clothes and buried in the tomb. He came four days too late. by that time the sisters' hearts were broken and their hopes were crushed.
when martha heard that He had finally come, she ran to Him immediately and left Mary at home. im sure tears streamed down her face as she cried out to her Friend. she questioned Him saying:" "if only... if only you came sooner... if only you had been here." despite the pain and the heart break that she felt, she found the strength and faith to say to Him: "i know God will give you whatever you ask of Him... i have always believed You."
after spending some time with Jesus and finding comfort in His presence, she then proceeded to call her sister Mary. when Mary saw that He was there, she ran to Him and fell at His feet. no words could be said. she bowed down and poured out the brokenness of her heart by washing His feet with her tears. in the midst of the the tears, she found the strength to cry out loud and said: "if only ... if only ... if only you were here"
often times i hear people say: "count it all joy if you face trials", like you're supposed to be void of all human emotions while going through a time of heartbreak. yet this story shows us a beautiful example of the lessons of faith and worship that we can learn from mary and martha as they went through their season of unanswered prayers and dying dreams:
there's something about martha: many people speak of martha as the "servant sister", almost downgrading her to make it seem like she wasn't as much of a worshiper as her sister. but with the words she uttered, she proved that her heart was filled with so much faith and hope. she had the audacity to pour out her heart to her Friend and dared question Him because she knew that He could take it. Jesus can take our emotions. it's better to be honest and raw with Him rather than to pretend. share your questions and your heart to Him. martha also showed us that though her brother was dead and her prayers were not answered, she still took Him at His word and believed He could do the impossible, even if everything around her screamed and proved otherwise. she shows us the importance of living by faith and not by sight. if He says He is the resurrection and the life, our immediate response must be like that of Martha saying: "i believe." [john 11:17-27]
there's something about mary: she was so broken, that she didn't know what else to do but to cry at His feet. little did she know that this act of worship that she had given while she was in pain would be the very inspiration that would cause her to break her alabaster jar and be an example of what a fully-abandoned worshiper of Christ looks like. she learned the meaning of real worship through pain. sometimes the most touching worship we can offer to Christ is when we are going through severe trials and pain. there is something that happens in the crucible of life that allows our hearts to be broken to worship Him in such a passionate way. the way we worship while our prayers are unanswered or while we face pain will determine how we will choose to worship Him when He gives us our breakthrough. [john 11:28-32 & john 12:1-5]
one spoke of faith in the midst of her pain.
one cried and worshiped.
they both dared question their Lord.
it moved Him so that He couldn't help but ask
"where have you put him?"
no matter what's going on in your life, continue to worship Him with an abandoned heart and have hope to beleive. don't let painful circumstances cause you to get jaded. your heart cries are like incense that reach the heavens. He will not be able to help but be moved by you. your worship will cause Him to ask "where have you put your dream/your prayer?" [john 11:33-34]
allow Him to take you in a journey to visit the painful places of your heart: the grave of unanswered prayers and dead dreams. allow Him to remind you that "He is The Resurrection and He is The Life". in the process of facing the pain with Him, learn how to take Him at His Word and learn to worship Him in Spirit and in Truth... it could be the very pathway for you to be able to see and receive one of the greatest miracles of your life: the miracle of resurrection power.