If You Had Been Here

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Living for God can be tough, especially when you know He has the power to do all things. He knows all things and is over all things and then … hard stuff like death happens. I have a friend who died just a couple of days ago, so allow me.

I was meditating on the death of Lazarus in the scriptures and this jumped out at me:

When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went out to meet him, but Mary stayed at home. John 11:20
— John 11:20

I paused as I read this. Why? Why did Mary stay back? The scriptures don’t say.

But the next verse, reads:

“Lord,” Martha said to Jesus, “if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” Vs. 21

I believe this gives a strong indication of what the conversation might have looked like between Mary and Martha after they sent word of Lazarus' illness to Jesus:

“Now that Jesus knows, He’ll get here and do something.”

“He heals people he doesn’t even know. Of course he’ll heal Lazarus. We’re his close friends!”

“I hope he gets here soon. Time’s running out.”

“He’ll get here. It’s Jesus. He loves us.”

But he didn’t. And Lazarus died. (Not the end of the story.)

A few verses later, Mary finally goes out to meet Jesus and says the same thing her sister said, “Lord, if you had been here…” Vs. 32

Mary - sensitive, trusting, and deeply in love with Jesus - must have felt so hurt by his lack of action on their behalf. Sensitive, trusting people are like that.

Dear friend, if you have an open, trusting heart, and you know God - what He’s able to do, what He’s done for others – if you’re struggling to express disappointment and hurt over God’s seeming inaction, (“Lord, if you had been here…”), believe and know this:

He is here. And He has been here in every sense of its meaning.

What you see is never the whole story.




I'm real because God is so real


Your Calling For Today

When have you wondered or openly expressed, “Lord, if you had been here…”?

For many of us, we wouldn’t necessarily utter the words, but we can begin to stand back like Mary did, withholding our hurt hearts from Jesus. He wants to hear and heal you where it hurts, dear one. Don’t pull away.

Stacey Wei