"Double Blessing challenges us to reframe our perception of blessing, seeing God's gifts as opportunities for increased generosity." —Pastor Louie Giglio


Summary: A sermon of encouragement to those going through troubles.


The Raising of Lazarus

John 11:1-44

John 11:1

Now a certain [man] was sick, [named] LAZARUS, of Bethany, the town of Mary and her sister Martha.

It is amazing how human beings even in the best of their element seem to crumble before troubling situations. Infact the bible is a book that reveals the many troubling and challenging situations that many men and women of God went through to get wherever God was taking them.

The only trouble with us is that we always think that God will take away the troubles in our lives permanently. Yes He may do away with trouble but guess what? He may also want us to walk through them most times. And ever since I became a Christian I have noticed that troubles never cease to come knocking at ones doorstep.

What? Does God want me to suffer? I didn’t say he wanted you to suffer but think about the following facts…….

 5 Now Jesus LOVED Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus.

Jesus loves us all, He loves all his children and that includes you and me. I love reading such simple Truth, it makes my day just to read about the evidence of His love.There were three people whom he loved and who at one time lived on this earth. Observe that He didn’t say he liked them or was fond of them but He loved them.This was a classic example of Jesus’ love for mere mortals like us.

 (verse 3 Therefore his sisters sent unto him, saying, Lord, behold, he whom thou lovest is sick)

Lazarus was Jesus’ friend but he fell sick even when the very Son of God was around busy performing miracles. That proves to me that being a child of God doesn’t necessarily guarantee me perfect, trouble free life and perfect health. Infact as seen above in verse 3 Jesus had to be told that Lazarus, an example of a man whom He loved the way He loves us, was sick. It seems it is practical for people to pray for you to Jesus and tell him about your state of mind, or health or even predicament in life. And for us it is also good to pray for your sisters and brothers to the Lord just as Martha and Mary

 4 When Jesus heard [that],………………..

However we are encouraged by the fact that whoever is a seeker of God can find audience with Jesus over the predicaments of another brother or sister. It is a point worth noting that Jesus heard from Mary and Martha that Lazarus was sick. They didn’t just say ‘God is omnipotent and He knows that the person He loves is sick’, but instead they went ahead and prayed. I call the asking prayer simply because we have become trained to think prayer is a ritual and not a conversation between us and our lord. Jesus had apparently not even heard of Lazarus’ state as seen below indicating that He was only just hearing the report from Mary and Martha.

 4 When Jesus heard [that],……………….. ……………

I love this simple but true statement; whenever Jesus hears prayers from brothers or sisters on behalf of their troubled brethren he Hears. People Jesus Hears prayers on behalf of you or your prayers on behalf of your brethren. Pray people pray for someone. Talk to Jesus and be specific even when the brother or sisters situation doesn’t seem to add up.

 …….he said, This sickness is not unto death,…

Some things are not meant for the bad end that you may imagine.Jesus is surely a Rock. Saints imagine Jesus not only hears our prayers but responds to them. He even knows that certain problems, predicaments and trials have a certain end and are not miscellaneous winds of trouble that happened to land in our lives. He defined the problem as one whose end was not death, meaning that everyone expected death as an end result but Jesus thought otherwise and had to correct his hearers about the sickness.

Please note that He never dismissed the sickness but gave reasons to its end. Sometimes situations and hard trials have a certain end and are not towards certain ends that people think of. Sometimes at work office politics, lies and deceitful backlashes would get so bad that I thought I would get fired for speaking the truth but in the end I would survive and it would turn out that the issues I was having had a certain purpose and not the devastating end that most people thought it would have. I would get accused of even the most minor of crimes and in the end it would instead reveal that my immediate seniors were trying to edge out someone preventing theft of property at the workplace. But before that I faced inquiries as the chief suspect in those cases and even my boss, who trusted me, had their confidence drop and had me face the firing squad, only to smile at me months later when i came out of the furnace without even a trace of smoke on my garment and saving the company lots of money. What would’ve happened if I had given up?

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