March 29, 2020: Reflection for the Fifth Sunday of Lent

by Cindy Wenninghoff, Notre Dame Associate
The 5th Sunday of Lent is moving us ever closer to the Passion and this week’s readings are preparing us.  From the Old Testament where God promises to raise his people up from the grave and give us his spirit, to the New Testament reminder that we must be in the Spirit to have everlasting life, we find how important it is to put our trust in God and with God nothing is impossible.

I have no doubt that when Jesus first received notice of how ill Lazuras was, that He would have wanted to be with his dear friends in their time of need.  Yet, He heeds God’s call and He waits – two days He waits.  And then when He makes the decision to go to them, He knows that Lazuras has died and that He will be performing an extraordinary miracle where many will come to believe in him… and many will come to hate him.  Traveling with his apostles, who knew it could mean their death, they arrive at the tomb, and we feel Jesus’ sorrow as He greets Martha and Mary.  He wept.   Yet, His faith and love of His Father is never in question as He wakes Lazuras from his sleep and proclaims the glory of God.  A true miracle, one of joy, but also of sorrow as He knows His time is near.

Jesus in performing this miracle was preparing us for his own resurrection.  If God could raise Lazuras from the dead, we could believe that God would raise Jesus from the dead.  It was important to see the power of God, and to believe, as Martha and Mary did, in the resurrection.  I take great comfort in knowing that the spirit will help us through this journey to new life and great comfort in Jesus’ word: If one walks in the day, he does not stumble, because he sees the light of this world.