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John 11.3-17

“I kept returning to three large questions about God…The longer I pondered them, the more I realized that these questions are lodged somewhere in all of us…Is God unfair?…Is God silent?…Is God hidden?” ~ Philip Yancey, Disappointment With God, pp. 35-36

With their brother barely clinging to life, and every human resource exhausted, Mary and Martha turned to the One they know would help—Jesus. They knew he would help because they’d seen and heard what he’d done for others: lepers healed, the paralyzed walking, the blind seeing, and the dead raised to life!

It’s not a stretch for them to think, “He’s healed so many others, certainly he’ll heal the one he loves” (John 11.3). But he doesn’t. As Jesus remained absent, it would’ve been easy for them to conclude that God was unfair, he was silent, and he was hidden.

But what Mary and Martha didn’t know, and what the disciples didn’t know either, was that Jesus had a greater purpose: to build their faith (John 11.14-15). Admittedly, this is not what we want to hear in the midst of our pain and chaos. But it’s often what he wants to do. God often uses something incredibly uncomfortable to deepen our trust in him.

Today, take a 3 x 5 card and write on it the one area in which you need God to deepen your trust. Take it with you and, as you see it during the day, pray for him to use your pain and chaos to do exactly that.