40 Days of Purpose

Monday, Day 35

photo by Guy Gerrard

Six days before the Passover, Jesus was back with His friends Martha, Mary and Lazarus, the man He raised from the dead. The family hosted a feast in honor of Jesus.

I imagine that the afterlife was a main topic of conversation. People came from everywhere to celebrate and hear about Lazarus’ experience in death.

In my mind I see Lazarus and Jesus lounging around a center table, talking about what Lazarus had experienced while he was gone from this earth: God’s presence, streets of gold, angels, no tears, peace, complete healing, perfection, life in full.

Lazarus had tasted heaven.

What a contrast to Martha and Mary’s agony. For four days they had mourned the loss of their brother. Four days of chaos, pain and grief. Four days of trying to gain stability in a broken world.

And then a miracle: Jesus conquered death.

We understand Martha and Mary’s joy, but I wonder, was Lazarus sad? He went from perfection back to brokenness, for a time. Lazarus would one day die again.

I’d like to think this conversation among friends was refreshing for Jesus. Maybe this little family understood at a deeper level the power of sin’s curse and what awaits Christians, once Jesus’ work of abolishing the power of sin and death was complete.

No wonder that Mary, a worshiper of Jesus, demonstrated her love for Jesus by anointing His feet with burial spices. The book of John records it this way, “Martha served, and Lazarus was one of those reclining with Him at table. Mary therefore took a pound of expensive ointment made from pure nard, and anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped His feet with her hair. The house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume.”

Heaven. It awaits all who recognize and worship Jesus as Savior and Lord. Will you pour out the perfume of praise for Jesus right now? Take a moment to consider heaven and our heavenly Father who loves you very much.

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