“Don’t hold on to the miracle; hold on to the miracle worker.”- Sheila Walsh
“Then Jesus shouted, ‘Lazarus, come out!’ And the dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped in graveclothes, his face wrapped in a headcloth. Jesus told them, ‘Unwrap him and let him go!’ Many of the people who were with Mary believed in Jesus when they saw this happen. But some went to the Pharisees and told them what Jesus had done.”- John 11:45-46 (NLT)
In Chapter 8 (“Held by the God of Miracles”) of Holding On, Sheila Walsh talks about John’s account of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead. First, Sheila points out two factors that contributed to the significance of the fact that Lazarus had been dead for four days:
- At times people placed in burial tombs revived a few hours or a day later. For example, perhaps they’d been in a coma. To protect against someone being buried alive, a guard took a post outside the tomb for three days. The guard listened for any sounds coming from the tomb.
- According to Jewish mourning traditions, the neshama (soul) hovers around the body for three days. During that period the soul decides to return to the body or not. But when the fourth day occurs, the soul permanently departs.
Therefore, no one ever witnessed bringing someone dead for four days back to life. Thus, many people in the crowd believed in Jesus. However, some reported Jesus’s miracle to the Pharisees. A mixed reaction. Those who ratted out Jesus witnessed with their own eyes that Jesus was the Messiah. But the evidence failed to change their hearts. Consequently, Sheila comments:
“A miracle might change our circumstances, but worshipping from . . . the place of broken dreams changes our hearts.”
In conclusion, Sheila observes, we find ourselves ready to change when the pain of remaining the same is greater than the pain of change. Hence, after our salvation, the greatest miracle = pouring out our story at Jesus’s feet. And hearing Him call us His child.
Today’s question: What most helps you hold on to Jesus, the miracle worker? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “Silent partners – holding on and letting go”