The Lord did a miracle for our family at my mother’s graveside last week. The pastor was telling the story of Lazarus,
and how Jesus said that those who believed in Him would never die.
Jesus then commanded Lazarus to come forth! And out Lazarus came, still
wrapped in grave cloths. Then Jesus told the people to take the grave
cloths off of him.
The pastor reiterated that belief in Jesus meant newness of life,
and then invited anyone present who wanted to be free of grudges, sins,
unforgiveness, or past failures, to lay those things down at the feet
of Jesus, to put them off as Lazarus had put off the grave cloths. They
could be buried with my mother’s body, and new life could start from
that moment on.
Two family members were in disharmony, and had been for some time. It
was my mother’s dying wish that they be reconciled. But for all of us
outside of the conflict, it seemed humanly impossible that such a
reconciliation could take place, because the bitterness was so deep.
These two came up to the grave and repented, and reconciled, and then
the tears really flowed, grief at losing our mother mixed with joy that
Mom was not the only one who laid down her life that day. Thank You,
It hit me full force, what the phrase “those who live might no longer live for themselves”
really means. We have died to living for ourselves, just as real
and just as final as my mother’s body died. Our old man is in the grave
in this life, just as permanently as my mother’s body is in the grave.
In what way have I been living for myself? What can I put off, to honor
Him who has been raised from the dead, in order that I may bear fruit for God?