I recently preached on the John 11 text, Lazarus’ death. Despite being theological trained and serving in vocational ministry for nearly 25 years, this passage still gives me pause. What was Jesus waiting on?
Why allow Lazarus to suffer, let alone his sisters, to experience devastating loss, especially when they know that Jesus can heal, even from afar? I get what Jesus was doing but wasn’t there a different means to the end?
Suffering and loss are universal human experiences. Unless you live on an island unto yourself, physically or emotionally, you and those you love will experience some form of disappointment, setback, loss, and grief. Naturally, this leads to challenging questions about God and God’s presence in our suffering for people of faith. But isn’t a life in Christ one of victory, not defeat?
“Buy the lie that your life is supposed to be heaven on earth, and suffering can be a torturous hell. But accept and expect that life is a battle, then suffering is part of earth’s topography to cross on our way to heaven,” said Ann Voskamp on the CBF Podcast Conversation.
We sat down with the acclaimed author to talk about life, suffering, and faith from her new book, “Waymaker: Finding The Way to The Life You’ve Always Dreamed Of.” Voskamp is a New York Times best-selling author with books such as “The Broken Way” and “The Greatest Gift.” In addition, she was named by Christianity Today as one of fifty women most shaping culture and the church today.
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Andy Hale is the creator and host of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship Podcast. Hale is the senior pastor of University Baptist Church of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, following eight years as the founding pastor of Mosaic Church of Clayton and five years as CBF’s church start specialist. Follow on Twitter @haleandy