Greater Things ©

It’s been a long time since I’ve been here to write on this blog. I would imagine everyone has packed up and moved on by now.  My heart’s been yearning to make some sense of what’s been transpiring in this season of life.   Yet, there have been no words.

To say that life has been turned upside down is an understatement.  There has been more going on in this last year than meets the eye.  It’s as if there is no stone being left unturned in my marriage, my life.  Things that have been hidden down deep for years have suddenly made their way up and out.

Like never before I’ve been challenged at the core of my faith.  The words have slipped out of my mouth more than once.  “Where were you?”  “Where have you been?”  “Why didn’t you come when I called you?”

A few days back I found myself in the pages of John as the familiar story took on a different light in a moment’s time.  I saw her like I had never seen her before.  I saw that in the pain of her circumstances much like me, she had been challenged too.

Weeks before she had poured expensive perfume on the feet of the one she loved.  As men stood by questioning her exravagance she knew it didn’t matter.  She spilled herself out freely.  She wiped His feet with her hair.  She risked everything to love.  At the core of her being she would follow Him anywhere, do anything.

That moment of sacrifice must have seemed like an eternity ago as she faced her current circumstances.  The question must have echoed through her heart.  Why didn’t He come when she needed Him the most?  I saw it woven into the words before me.

Lazarus had gotten sick.  She sent for Jesus to come and heal him.  She knew of His power.  He had stayed in her home.  He had eaten at her table.  He had healed those who came.  Surely He would come quickly to touch one so dear to His heart.   She sent for Him… But He didn’t come..

Jesus did not come until it was too late.

Lazarus died.

After it was all over He showed up on the road to their house.  Martha went out to meet Him.  Mary stayed home.  She did not go out to meet Him.  She stayed home.

You can see a lot in a story if you look, especially if your world has you ripe and ready.

I was.

Jesus asked Martha to get Mary.  It was then she got up and left the house to go and meet Him.  Her words spoke the story of her moments.  “If you had been here, my brother would not have died.”  I saw it, suddenly, for the first time.  She was asking Him what I had asked.  “Why didn’t you come?”  “Where were you?”

He saw her weeping. He groaned.  He ached.  He wept too.  People said it was because Jesus loved Lazarus so much.  They believed it was His grief for a life lost.  How could that be I wondered.  After all Jesus knew He would raise Lazarus.  It is why He tarried.  He knew that Lazarus had to die in order for the greater thing to be revealed.

He couldn’t have wept for the loss of Lazarus.  He must have wept for the struggle He saw in Mary.

He called for the stone to be removed.   “Lazarus come forth,” He announced.  It was then the eyes of understanding were opened to her.  There was purpose in His delay.  He had been right where she needed Him to be.  He knew the greater thing she did not.

Greater things await….

Surely He has groaned for me too. He is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow after all.  As it was for Mary it must surely be for me. As the tears have rolled down my face, while groans escaped my lips surely has He wept too.

It’s in the middle of the storm when the clouds part just a little allowing the sun to peek its way through that hope creeps in.

I’m in that in between place.  I do not yet see the greater thing.  In those sacred moments, Mary’s life testified thousands of years later.  I became kindred to her in a way I had not known.  For her story reminds me that there are greater things I know not of.

It is the way of the God of the ages.

©copyrighted:  2012; julie l. todd






34 thoughts on “Greater Things ©

  1. Oh so beautiful! So glad to see your new post in my inbox. These words, the life behind them and the One who tarries in the greater thing not yet seen, they all give me hope. Thank you for writing today! I love you!

  2. Praying that God will continually keep you close and strong. Not sure of your ‘issues’ but HE who holds us close knows it all and I say JUST cling to him. good to see you writing again.

    • Sharon, thank you so much for your prayers. I am so very grateful. The good news is that even when my arms are weary from clinging to Him, His arms never let go of me. Thank you for being here… truly!

  3. Julie!!! My heart goes crazy wild when I see your blog posts in my email! So happy to see you writing again… the seasons without words can be so hard to process… I understand that completely. I wrote a “lesson” I learned the other day and a friend of mine encouraged me to start up my blog again and I just didn’t see the point when the words are so few, but reading your heart today encourages me that maybe someone else just might benefit from it, i don’t know really, but would like to think so. Anyway, I’ll send it you! I feel God pursuing like no other time before and am grateful for your post today. I’m going back through your other writings, too, because your heart is just so full of His hand and it makes me feel closer to Him… thank you for sharing this today….

    • Shanda, dear, sweet Shanda, you have been one of the greatest sources of encouragement in my writing. I am so blessed to have you here. I absolutely loved your lesson you wrote and YES, YES I think you should post it on your blog. It’s simply beautiful. Your heart shared is a rare and precious gift! I cannot tell you what it does to my heart to hear about God’s pursuit.. You know I love you and truly love hearing about you! Thank you, sweet friend!

  4. Thank you for opening that precious passage to me once again. I too, am there wondering ‘where are you?’ The silence has been deafening even in moments of sunlight filtering through the clouds. I wait and hope to see the bigger picture holding on to the One who will not let me go.

    • Mimi, thank you for your interest in this season of my life. I’ve never been one who has shyed away from being personal. It is a season where God has been at work in more ways that One. It all started when my husband lost his job.

  5. Having never visited your blog, it was “shared” by a friend on FB. You have no idea how timely your words are for me today. I truly believe, your sharing this message, is an answer from God. The Scripture has touched my heart and opened my understanding to literally decades of wondering where He was during what seemed like endless heartache and struggle. I’m thanking God for you today, and asking Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we can ask or think, to bless you with courage to continue your writings, and to fill your life with His peace and hope.

    • Karen, I wish I knew how to reach you. I just cannot begin to tell you what your words mean to me… Truly they are a gift. I understood each word you wrote from a deep place in me. Thank you for coming here today. Thank you for being brave and writing to let me know of your journey. To see that this stormy season of life has brought encouragement to you stuns me. Bless you!

  6. No bags packed here. You write what is in the heart of many people, and express the pain and doubt and questions but also the wonder of God. Like a Psalm….:-) I have missed your posts. I love you.

  7. I am overwhelmed to see so many of you here… your words, a rare and precious gift to me. Thank you for not giving up on me. I pray more words come cause writing has been one of the great loves of my life. I have missed the feel of writing the words. Thank you all again for your great love. I am overwhelmed!

  8. thank you for being real and honest…i think that is where people relate and find you…you are not alone in that place and this was a beautiful reminder that even when we dont see it…greater things are yet to come…

  9. This is beautiful.

    That line…’why hadn’t he come when she needed him most?’…I think I say that quite a lot. Why doesn’t he come? But sometimes I think he comes when we realize we need him because he wants our hearts freely given.

  10. Jewelz – I’m going to share this and your blog link with some of my sistas here. Your words and God’s speaking into your spirit, speak beauty in Him…

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