Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus.
So when he heard that Lazarus was sick, he stayed
where he was two more days.
Do you feel as if Jesus has your life on pause? Feel like you want to hand Jesus the remote to press the play button again so you can move forward on things that matter to you?
When Jesus Pauses—I thought I would conclude this Pause Devotional Series on this subject because the distance between our pause and what we long for can pull us close or away from Jesus.
While it might feel especially difficult when Jesus pauses, we can have peace in knowing that his pauses are purposeful, necessary, and bigger than us.
We find several accounts in the Bible when Jesus pauses. One familiar story is the woman with the issue of blood in the fifth chapter of Mark.
Jesus is on His way to the home of Jairus to heal his twelve-year-old daughter who is dying. It was an emotional day for Jairus. I can only imagine his thoughts were all about his daughter and that Jesus couldn’t get to his home fast enough.
The street was crowded with people seeking Jesus. Jesus pauses to heal the woman who had the issue of blood for twelve years that reached out from the crowd and touched the hem of his garment.
How would you have felt if you were Jairus?
Later in this chapter we find out that his daughter died. Perhaps Jairus thought if Jesus had not paused and got there sooner, his daughter would be alive.
That was how Mary and Martha felt when their brother died. This familiar story is found in the eleventh chapter of John. Jesus purposefully pauses for a few days before returning to Bethany.
So when he heard that Lazarus was sick, he stayed where he was two more days (John 11:6).
But it is the verse that precedes this verse that is bewildering. Verse 5 says: Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus.
If you loved someone—like Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus—it is reasonable to expect love to show up much different—like rushing with a swift pace rather than pausing for two days.
In John 11:3-4, we find the ultimate reason why Jesus pauses:
So the sisters sent word to him, saying, “Master, the one you love is ill.” When Jesus heard this he said, “This illness is not to end in death, but is for the glory of God, that the Son of God may be glorified through it.”
It was for the glory of God, that the Son of God may be glorified through the daughter of Jairus and Lazarus both being raised from the dead.
When Jesus pauses—God is also at work to accomplish His good work in us as he aligns our hearts for what pleases him.
For it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure (Philippians 2:13).
If you feel Jesus has your life on pause or on pause in a specific area, ask yourself these questions:
How is God using time—this pause—as part of His work in you?
What do you think God is at work in you to will and to work for His good pleasure?
Prayer: Lord, help me to understand that your pauses are necessary. I know that you love me, and you are at work in my life. Forgive me for always wanting you to rush on my account. It is through the process of your pauses that I am becoming more like you.