Today is the Fifth Sunday of Lent: The Raising of Lazarus
Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.” Martha said to him, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.” Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and whoever lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?”
Martha looks back to the past and wishes that Jesus had come in time to save her brother Lazarus. “If only you’d been here!” But Jesus presents a new picture to her by asserting that her brother will rise one day. She agrees because this was a fairly common belief in Jesus’ time. The novelty is that Jesus brings the future into the present. “I am the resurrection and the life.” Now, there is no need to go back to the past to find comfort. We need to look to the future and realise that the future can be brought to us today in the person of Jesus. The Carmelite text from the fourteenth century, The Ten Books, puts it like this: “to taste the sweetness of heavenly glory, not only after death, but already in this mortal life.”
Let us pray:
Jesus Christ, the love that gives love,
You are higher than the highest star;
You are deeper than the deepest sea;
You cherish us as your own family;
You embrace us as your own spouse;
You rule over us as your own subjects;
You welcome us as your dearest friend.
Let all the world worship you.
- Saint Hildegard of Bingen
- Reflection written by Fr Kevin Alban, O.Carm, Prior Provincial (read Fr Kevin's other Lent reflections, here)