The Stones in Our Lives - Lenten Devotional

During Lent, as we ponder how the theme “Lost and Found” relates to our journey of faith, we will share a weekly devotion written by an active elder or a staff member. We hope these provide “food for thought” during this season.


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When I was much younger, I was given a Bible school assignment to find and memorize a verse from the New Testament. Of course, thinking I was clever I selected John 11:35, “Jesus wept,” which is the shortest verse in the Bible. While this passage is technically the shortest verse in the Bible, I have come to appreciate its importance in the larger context of the story of The Death of Lazarus (John Chapter 11). 

Death for most people represents the greatest loss that we will experience. This short verse emphasizes the human side of Jesus and the loss he felt when he saw the place where Lazarus, his friend, was buried. As you know Jesus went on to raise Lazarus from the dead. What I find to be the one of the most compelling parts of the story was that before Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead, he directed the family to remove the stone that was covering the entrance to the tomb. The family protested that there would be a bad odor if they were to remove the stone, which seems to be a very rational reply. Jesus insisted that they remove the stone and when the family complied, Jesus went on to bring Lazarus back to life and “find” what once was “lost.” Here are my takeaways from this story:

  • Don’t allow practical or rational thinking keep you from envisioning what miracles Jesus can perform. Jesus is not bound by human limitations.

  • We need to do everything as humans that we can do. Given that Jesus was about to raise someone from the dead he certainly could have moved the stone from the tomb himself. I think it is important to understand that Jesus asked the family to do everything that they could do first and then he stepped in and did what they could not do. As Christians many times we may sit around waiting for Jesus to “fix” problems. 

We all need to find the stones in our lives, move them and then experience the miracles of Jesus. I think we will discover what was once lost can now be found.

—Eric Rohr, Elder

FPC Richmond