Today’s Truth

Then Jesus said, “Did I not tell you that if you believe, you would see the glory of God?” (John 11:40 NIV)

Have you ever gone through a situation and wondered, Jesus where are You? If You had been here, this wouldn’t have happened? The loss of a loved one? The crash of a car? The devastation of property? Did you know that two women in the Bible felt the same way…and actually told Jesus just how they felt about it!

Jesus loved Mary, Martha, and their brother, Lazarus. He often stopped by their home for a hot meal during His travels. I’d dare say they were some of His closest friends. And yet, when the girls sent someone to tell Jesus that Lazarus was sick, He didn’t go…at least not right away.

The Bible tells us, “So, when he heard that Lazarus was sick, he stayed where he was two more days, and then he said to his disciples, “Let us go back to Judea” (John 11:6-7 NIV).

It’s the word “so” that stops me in my tracks. He loved them so He didn’t go. The sentence doesn’t say, but He stayed there two more days, as it if were a careless mistake. It says so as if it were a calculated plan. It was.

Once Jesus decided to return to Bethany of Judea, His disciples tried to talk Him out of it. A short while ago, the folks there had tried to kill Him. But Jesus wasn’t worried.

He told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead, and for your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him” (John 11:14-15).

Hold on just a minute. Did you catch what Jesus just said? “I’m glad I wasn’t there.” Those words stop me in my tracks too. Why was Jesus glad that one of His best friends had died? Because God had a greater plan.

When I go through something painful, I wouldn’t want a friend to say to me, “I’m glad it happened.” If they did, they wouldn’t be a friend much longer. However, God sees what we can’t see. Sometimes what we have in mind is not what God has instore.

Why would Jesus say, “I’m glad I wasn’t there?” Why would God be glad that hurt that feels like it is tearing us apart happened? I think it is because He knows that the mended heart will be much more stunning and substantially stronger than the unscathed soul. He looks through the lens of process to view the finished product we cannot see.

It’s hard when you read the stories in the Bible or hear about a modern-day miracle and know that God can do something but He’s not doing it for you. I’m sure it was hard for Mary and Martha who had seen Jesus do magnificent miracles to understand why he wasn’t doing one for them. We silently think, If God really loved me, He would…

Answer my prayer.

Stop the struggle.

Rush to my rescue.

Send me a husband.

Make me fertile.

Save my husband.

And He would do it now.

When Jesus finally arrived, Martha ran to Him and said, “If you had been here my brother would not have died” (John 11:21). Then Mary ran to Him and said the same words (John 11:32). Two sisters. One conclusion.

Have you ever said those words? I’ll admit, I have. Men and women throughout the Bible voiced their disappointment when God didn’t act as they had hoped. Even Jesus, when He hung on the cross, did not call out the comforting words of the twenty-third Psalm but the agonizing words of the twenty-second.

God promises that He will never leave us or forsake us. And yet, when we are in the dark chapters of our story, it can feel as if He is far, far away. And we wonder why He didn’t stop the thing that tore our world apart from happening. But He has a plan.

After Jesus spoke to Martha and Mary, He walked to Lazarus’s tomb—a cave sealed by a large stone. Nothing going in. Nothing coming out. Or so it seemed. Then Jesus said, “Lazarus come out” and he did.

Sometimes a seemingly bad thing happens so that God’s best can be born. Jesus told Martha, “Did I not tell you that if you believe, you would see the glory of God?” (John 11:40).

God frees us from our small, short-sided interpretations to reveal a complex multi-layered ending that makes our jaws drop. All the while asking, “Will you trust me?”

And when we echo Martha’s cry, God where are you? His answer is always, I’m right here. Working all this out for your good.

Let’s Pray

Father, help me to trust that You always have a better plan for my life than I could ever come up with on my own.
In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Now It’s Your Turn

What difficult situation do you need to trust Jesus with today? Leave a comment and let’s pray for one another. Just a few words will do.

More From the Girlfriends

Today’s devotion was an excerpt from Sharon’s book, Never Less Than: Living Empowered, Esteemed, and Equipped When the World Tells You Otherwise. Get Your copy today.

(This is a revised and updated edition of How Jesus Broke the Rules to Set You Free).

© 2022 by Sharon Jaynes. All rights reserved.

 

46 Responses to “Jesus, Where Were You?”

  1. Carola says:

    Que mi esposo deje de codiciar mujer ajena.y todo lo ajeno.

  2. Barbara says:

    For many years now since I gave my life to Christ I have suffered with several infirmities. I pray and say I trust God these different trials would pass. Recently in reading I came across a statement that said sometimes our infirmities could be a result of bitterness in our hearts. And I’m beginning to feel this may be the key to me receiving my healing. So the thing that I’ve really had an issue with and praying for God to deliver me from unknowingly and willingly holding on to hurts caused by others that causes me to be bitter.

  3. Trish says:

    The day my husband died due to the neglect of another

  4. Jessica says:

    Orando por el esposo de Carola libertad. Me too asking God for a change in my husband and his salvation in Jesus

  5. Sonja says:

    My husband told me he wants to separate. I suggest counseling but he’s too prideful and it’s all about me. I’m the problem .

  6. Susan says:

    The death of 2 parents, within 4 years, leaving behind 3 boys.

  7. Caroline says:

    I pray for the relationship between my son and myself to be restored.

  8. Sheila says:

    I have a grown son that has been an addict for couple years. He is just gotten divorced and a new baby. I can’t be around that behavior. I pray everyday that God will turn this around and he will be the person he was before he chose this path.

  9. Cathy says:

    My family

  10. Angela says:

    Please pray for my family. My daughter and her family are living with us and it has been very stressful for us all. It just seems like everyone is miserable. I pray every day that God will bring peace upon my house and family. I know He has a plan, but it breaks my heart to see what is happening and feel so worthless.

  11. Sherri says:

    The mist difficukt decision to place my mother in a nursing home because I cannot properly care for her. Pray they are kind and caring to her.

  12. Susan Pressley says:

    Lost both parents in past 6 months. Schedule for surgery tomorrow and having anxiety about being put to sleep for fear of not waking up. My grief is overwhelming.

  13. Mary says:

    I have 3 emergency room visits from the stress of my job. Please pray that God will PROMOTE me to a new stress free job.

  14. B says:

    Around 2009 my ex husband and I separated for the last and final time. I was alone with 2 children and pregnant with our last child. I had no where to live, money was low. Sometimes it was difficult for us to have proper meals. It was rough. Then came the divorce in 2011.

    Let me just say, I have never experienced so much hurt, uncertainty, confusion and despair. Over and over I was asking God why, why. Between 2009 and 2011 I had thoughts of suicide. I hated myself for “allowing the situation. I didn’t feel close to God.

    Although I was going through that horrible situation I did not turn my back on God. I didn’t think I was doing a good job of having a relationship with God but I held on. Probably by a thread. Bit by bit the hurt, pain and everything else melted away. I started to feel alive again.

    I can stand today and say “thank you Lord for my pain.” I am a forever changed person. God never left me. He was right there.

    I love you Lord.

  15. Linda says:

    My niece has walked away from God and her family.

  16. My very best friend and next door neighbour of 34 years sold her house and moved quite a distance away. She’s been my prayer partner, and my rock in good times and bad. Very painful. Praying our relationship will still stay strong.

  17. Nikki Mondia says:

    Pls pray for my Grandchildren Brock & Victoria that their hearts will be softened towards their father who has always Loved them , in the powerful name of Jesus I Pray Amen 🙏

  18. Nikki Mondia says:

    Pls pray for my Grandchildren Brock & Victoria that their hearts will be softened towards their father Sonny who has always Loved them , in the powerful name of Jesus I Pray Amen 🙏

  19. Sherri says:

    Please pray for my niece. She is trying to save her marriage and it is breaking her heart. This was good for me today because I’ve asked God many many times why this is happening to this precious sweet person. Pray for her husband to see what he’s doing is destroying his little family. He KNOWS God. He just has to find him again!

  20. Shonda P says:

    Please pray for my finances and walk with our Lord and Savior.

  21. Michelle says:

    Please lift my son up in your prayers. He has struggled with depression and other issues the past few years. He is definitely in a better place all because of Gods sweet hands that held and protected him during those darkest days. He is 24 almost 25 now and still has his struggles and finding his way through life. It has put a strain on the relationship with me and his siblings and especially him and his dad. Pray we have the right words of encouragement and support, pray for God to show up big and delivery him out of whatever he is struggling with.

    Thank you and sending lots of love and prayers for you all.

    God is good all the time and All the time God is good!

  22. Linda Wilson says:

    I need to be strong to turn from my sin today .I am week but He is strong !!

  23. Odaisha says:

    I trusted God and took a leap of faith when he told me to move from New York to Wisconsin, a place I had never been, that was 2021. It was a difficult year because of money and uncertainty but still a blessing in spite. This year 2022 I had high hopes and expectations I would be blessed and rewarded for my obedience. Second week of January I had to move out my apartment because I couldn’t afford the rent, and move into a friends 1 bed room apartment with her. Dealing with having to stay with someone, on my way to church last week I got into a car accident and my car is now deemed totaled. That was the last thing I had that I felt was of my own, in the midst of all of this, my husband said he needed a break to focus on him. It’s only the second month of the year and I’m just asking God why? And when? When will this stop and when will I see the breakthrough I’ve been so desperately praying for

  24. Please pray for my family. My son got in some trouble and went to prison for two years. His ex-wife would not let his daughter even talk to him. The only time she was able to talk to him was when she was with us (which wasn’t that often). But they talked as much as possible while she was there. They had a very close relationship and my son was and still is a great father. When time for him to be released for closer, her mom stopped all communication with us and parents, anyone on my sons side of the family. She and I had a very close relationship as well. They have completely turned her against my son and us as well. She told me off in a text a while back when I told her momma how I felt. I wasn’t being mean, I just told her mother in a letter how I did t understand why she was treating us this way and listed each of the situations that had happened. I got a text supposedly from my granddaughter telling me off, but I don’t know who really wrote it. It may have been her momma. My son has paid the price for his actions, he has served his time and has almost paid all restitution back and he has yet to even talk to his daughter much less see her. They had the closest relationship and this is tearing him up inside. (What he did had nothing to do with children in any way, so she can’t use that excuse.) He kissed (we all did) Christmas with her. Her birthday is in 4 days on February 6. She will be 15. Even though she wouldn’t see him for Christmas, he did buy her two special necklaces and leave them in her mailbox for her. He never heard a word until yesterday when he called her mother to get her to measure her arm so he could buy her a Pandora bracelet for her birthday and her mother told him that he could do what he wanted but she probably wouldn’t wear it. She went on to tell him that the two necklaces that he gave her for Christmas were in the bottom of a shoebox under her bed. She said that she wanted nothing to do with anything her daddy gave her. And she wouldn’t even let her measure her arm because she knew it was for her daddy. They have obviously told her some awful things about all of us and turned her completely against us. We have NEVER done anything but love this child with all our hearts. Her mother has given her anything and everything she wanted and allows her to do what she wants. (Her moms own admission). We miss her and love her sooo much. And i just feel sometimes like God has forgotten us. I know he hasn’t but I don’t understand why. My son has been home8 months. He is a changed man and has grown so much closer to God and you can see the changes everyday in his. He seems to be handling it much better than me. He has grown so much spiritually while he was incarcerated. I don’t question God, I know in my heart that He is in control but I’m struggling with this one. I have a cousin whose story is on the same lines and it’s been over 10 years and she still hasn’t seen her grandchildren and probably never will. I’m just scared that that will be our story too. I know God urges us to do right but He doesn’t MAKE us do anything we don’t want to do. And if He never makes them, we will NEVER see her again.I want to trust God fully. It’s just so hard when other people are in control of her. I want more than anything to have her back but if my son could just get his daughter back, I’d settle for that.

  25. April Krygowski says:

    My husband has a brain tumor. My daughter-in-law has thyroid cancer. My other son’s family has been estranged from us for 4 years. I was so close to those 2 grandsons!
    But God is steadfast, faithful and true. “My strength and my heart failed, but God is the strength of my life, and my portion forever.”

  26. Gervais says:

    Thank you for Orange Lord! As long as you knew!!! But then again where I am you are, remember Jesus? Keep the monkey off my back

  27. Carol says:

    I’ve finally understood, my defeated heart when it comes to my un-saved family.
    Jesus says the same words to me, “Did I not tell you that if you believe you would see the glory of God?”(John 11:40).
    Jesus wants to build more faith in MY heart; so that my prayers will be the seeds of God’s actions in theirs!
    Sharon, may God continue to bless and inspire you; so we can see His work in action.

  28. Shannon says:

    Carol, I so needed to hear that today. I have been praying for my un-saved loved ones and feel my prayers are being tossed to the wind. I know they are not and God hears every single one of them….that is just what it feels like. I love how you worded this: “Jesus wants to build more faith in MY heart; so that my prayers will be the seeds of God’s actions in theirs. Lord help me to believe and build more faith in my heart!

  29. Teresa says:

    Almost 2 1/2 yrs ago my sister and best friend went in to have 2 brain aneurisms removed. Dr said it would be an easy surgery. Surgery seemed to go well and on day 4 after her surgery she had a stroke. That day she was even going to go back to work. Recovery from that was lengthy in ICU for months then sent to a nursing home she began showing signs of recovery but was still paralyzed on the left side. She could speak clearly but was delayed . In the initial surgery she had to have a piece of her skull removed to relieve pressure in her brain. The week before Thanksgiving she went to go into have her skull replaced and
    it did not go well. She began having uncontrollable seizures and another stroke. There was no hope for rehabilitation or Insurance really didn’t want to pay another round!? I felt and still do lost without her and feel like it is so CRUEL!!! My beautiful sister is no longer herself, she lives in a nursing home and probably will for the rest of her life. I know God has his ways and plans but every time I call her and there is little to no response it breaks my heart over and over! God’s Will Be Done! And may He choose to heal my heart and trust Him in all this!

  30. Melanie says:

    That devotion was on spit today needed to hear that. Prayers for family.

  31. Randi says:

    ABBA FATHER BLESS ALL THAT COMMENTED HERE TODAY. FATHER STRENGHTEN THEM AND RAISE THEM UP OUT OF THE PIT OF DEPSPAIR THAT THEY FIND LOVE TRUST FAITH FORGIVENESS JOY PEACE WITH YOU LORD. THANK YOU FATHER I ASK THIS IN JESUS NAME. THE BLOOD OF JESUS COVER THESE WOMEN AND THEYRE FAMILIES.

  32. Lauren says:

    I have been dealing with the realization that the man I was seeing was not who he appeared to be. While I am thankful that God showed me early on in the relationship it is still heartbreaking to let go of the idea of the direction I thought things were headed. I have been stuggling with alot of unpleasant emotions. Rejection, fear and self doubt. While I know deep down God listens to my prayers and is working it all together for good, I will admit that sometimes it is easy for me to question why God is not stepping in. Either working the situation out the way that I wanted it to go or giving me the clarity I need to move on. This was a reminder that God acts in his perfect timing and has a bigger and better plan than I could ever envision. We all have felt these feelings at one point or another and it helps to know I am not alone.

  33. Amelia says:

    My husband and I just lost our baby Elijah by miscarriage. It has been the most paid situation of our lives. I thank God for not allowing me to be alone throughout this process. I also thank God for allowing us to give Elijah a proper burial since he was less than 20 weeks into gestation. We plan to have his burial tomorrow and I pray that God’s strength be with and in us to leave his body at the cemetery. Our pregnancy didn’t go as I expected, but I know God knows why and His plans are perfect. I pray not to question or reproach Him. I just want to thank Him and give Him praise for His ways are perfect. I pray that our experience with baby Elijah is used as a testimony and that His fire burns in us than ever before, so it spreads to others we speak with. My uterus feels empty and I’m having a hard time accepting, but I pray to be able to move on and never forget our love for baby Elijah. I also pray for God willing baby Elijah’s siblings to come, and that they also know who Elijah was.
    Thank you Sharon for sharing this devotional today. God aligned for me to read this today as it was much needed. So soothing.

    Love,

    – Amelia

  34. Tamra says:

    Our growing family, (spouse and future spouses). Brother who is struggling with addiction . Situation with our home at this stage in life for us. Guidance with financials.Thank you for this devotion. It speaks to me and resonates loudly.

  35. Rebecca says:

    I have worked in the public school system for roughly five years and two as an elementary school teacher. I have had several interviews over the past 13years with the public school systems, while I have taught as a special education teacher in the public charter schools. I have now been in my current district for 12 years, and 10 as their direct employee. I have an interview tonight with a public school distrust who is adamant about interviewing me. I applied back in March through one of their employees. After talking to her, I realized what a perfect fit it would be. While I was disappointed that I never received an interview, I moved forward and into a new school year at a building closer to my home (still with the same district). Last week, I received can email about this interview. I took it. I’m nervous, but I know this is part of God’s bigger plan for me. Prayers for peace and comfort are appreciated. I am excited to see where God is taking me!

  36. MA says:

    My college son is struggling with depression and anxiety, has an appointment today for counseling. Please pray that he sticks with this process of seeking help, and that God leads him to a like-minded, Godly therapist who invests in him to see him back to happiness.

  37. Julie says:

    I would appreciate some prayer today

  38. Tiffany G. says:

    Provision of work and discovering God’s unique purpose for my life

  39. Dennia says:

    I’ve read every one of these prayer requests. It makes me feel close to every woman here as if we’re all sitting in a circle in someone’s living room. It’s a sweet sensation and, in a way, it’s true; it’s not a living room, but it is a circle of sisterly love. And I think our prayer “power” is multiplied as there are more of us who are praying.

    My own request is for a sister in one of my Christian women’s support groups on Facebook. Her name is Linda. She’s been in horrible pain for months now due to degenerative disks in her spine which doctors, shots, and meds haven’t been able to cure. Not only that, her grown children don’t seem to care enough to as much as call her. This angers me. I mean with Skype and Zoom, she can talk to her grandkids like they were right there! But no, her daughter says, “we’re too busy.” Rant over. On top of that her vehicle needs work, major, expensive work. Please pray for my friend, Linda.

  40. Kellie says:

    My husband is struggling with his identity. He says he’s no longer a Christian and that he was traumatized by his Christian upbringing. I think he desires to be transgender but he knows that would be the end of our marriage. I’m completely broken over this as I thought we had a great marriage.

  41. Danell says:

    God will bless my daughter with a husband and family and God would bless me with a Godly mate. Been praying for both for long time. Thinking maybe it’s not God’s plan. Like Martha felt

  42. Roberto says:

    Thank you Jesus for the Godly mate!

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"We loved you so much that we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well…" 1 Thessalonians 2:8