Article To Build Faith - Just For You!

                 Cathy & Harry

Cathy Ray Ministries 

                 DELAYS  ARE  NOT  DENIALS!

     Get a cup of coffee and when you have read this article

          You will know that  "You"  Are NOT Forgotten!

Lazarus was very sick and about to die. Mary and Martha sent news to Jesus about their brother but Jesus did not respond the way they thought He would.  They expected Jesus to come to them immediately.  He seemed to actually snub their request. 

The Bible says when Jesus heard that Lazarus was sick,

" (Jesus) stayed two days longer in the place where He was."  (St. John 11:6, NASB).    For those two anxious sisters, that was a very, very long time.  Doubts tormented them.  Perhaps they thought:  What kind of friend is Jesus, anyway?  Why didn't He rush to our aid?   Mary was especially troubled by Jesus' seemly insensitive delay.

When Jesus finally arrived in Bethany, everybody in the village was morning.  And Mary's faith was as cold as Lazarus' corpse.  She didn't even want to talk to Jesus.  She stayed in the house while her sister went to ask Jesus why He took so long  (St. John 11:20).   Most likely Mary was sulking, maybe even struggling with feelings of anger toward Jesus

because He was so late.

Many of  us get stuck in this place of disappointment.  We get upset and confused when God doesn't work according  to our timetable. 

Perhaps you have been asking Jesus to intervene in your crisis?   You may need Him to rescue a wayward child, restore a broken relationship, heal your body (or someone else's) or salvage a dream that is on it's death bed.  It may seem that Jesus is so busy meeting the needs of others that He dropped 

you from His priority list.  

Like Mary of Bethany, you may feel that Jesus waited too long. Your problem seems so serious, and your dream so lifeless, that now Jesus can't help you.  It's over.

When we face these frustrating delays, we automatically assume that He is denying us, neglecting us or rejecting us.  So we throw a childish pity party.  We go in our rooms, close our doors, shut out the pain and stay as far away from Jesus as possible. 

We find it difficult to pray when we are in a faith crisis.  The devil tells us that Jesus doesn't care, that our prayers are meaningless and that there is no reward for believing in Him. Some of us, if we have melancholy tendencies, also beat ourselves up with the classic "I guess I just don't have enough faith" line.

Thankfully,  Mary did not stay in her self-made prison of discouragement.  The Bible says thatwhen Jesus arrived at Lazarus' tomb, Mary ran to Him and knelt at His feet -

the place where she began her journey of discipleship

(St. Luke 10: 39).  After all her moping, she returned to the ONLY place where life's struggles make sense.  She stopped asking WHY?  She focused on WHO Jesus was.

She knelt in His presence,  not to ask Him why He let Lazarus die but simply to gain strength from being with Him.  She left behind the whining immaturity that demands Jesus must act a certain way.  She chose to grow up and look up.

When she surrendered her life to Him that day, she was saying that she would follow Him not only in the good times

but also on dark days when she couldn't see His love through the clouds of grief, suffering and pain.

There, at Jesus' feet, Mary caught a glimpse of Jesus like she'd never seen Him before.  Jesus wept for Lazarus, and then [ Jesus commanded Lazarus: "Come out of that grave!" ]  calling forth Lazarus' lifeless body, which was in the grave 4 days!  His  body came back to life!   Mary would have missed this great 

miracle if she'd stayed in seclusion.  She needed to see and know thatGod's delays are NOT DENIALS!   Jesus has perfect timing.

Have YOU been sinking into despair because your dream has died? -  You think Jesus doesn't care? RUN BACK TO HIM NOW !  Take your place at His feet.   

True disciples know that life operates on God's schedule, not ours.  Press through your doubts, surrender your impatience and renew your trust in Jesus, He Who IS the Sovereign Lord over your circumstances! 

"He hears!  He loves You And YOU will not be denied.  

Life is short but eternity is forever.  Jesus rose from the grave.  He shows us WE will be raised too!  He 

has gone to prepare a place for us.  Where  Christ is,

there we will be also.  Praise God!" - Pastor Cathy -

Foot Notes: Article by: J. Lee Grady, Editor of Charisma.