St. John xi. 1—45.
When Lazarus fell sick, his sisters Martha and Mary sent to Jesus, saying, " Lord, he whom Thou lovest is sick." Jesus after two days starts for Bethany, and arrives there when Lazarus had been dead four days. Martha hastens to meet Jesus. Mary waits until she is sent for. Jesus approaches the grave, and cries aloud, " Lazarus, come forth ! " And he that was dead came forth still bound with the grave clothes.
1. The message sent by Martha and Mary is a model of prayer in trouble, especially in temporal trouble. They do not ask for anything, they simply state their needs. He likes us to tell Him our troubles, and if He delays, and seems to neglect us as He did Martha and Mary, it is that He may in the end perform a signal miracle on our behalf. I then will tell Him my troubles, and be content to leave it all to Him.
2. See the difference between the active Martha and the passive Mary. The former runs unbidden to meet Jesus ; the latter waits. It was Mary's grief that chiefly moved the tears of Jesus. He likes those who are passive until He calls them to act; those who remain where they are until He summons them elsewhere ; those who wait for His inspirations, instead of following their own impulses. Am I one of these ?
3. The raising of Lazarus corresponded in the physical order to the raising of the soul from the spiritual death of sin. The latter is a far greater miracle. How happy I should account myself if I have the privilege of taking part with Jesus in raising from the corruption and death of sin, any of those souls for which He died.
From - The Ministry of Jesus, meditations for six months