Reflection For 5th Sunday Of Lent

IF JESUS WAS WITH US
The First Reading today (Ezekiel 37:12-14) presents us with the oracle of the prophet Ezekiel declaring that God will open the graves of his people and put His spirit in them and they will live. In the Second Reading (Romans 8:8-11), St. Paul expands the discussion on the Spirit of God that gives us life. Without the Spirit we are lifeless.

The gospel reading (John 11:1-45) presents us with the long drama that accompanied the raising of Lazarus to life. We shall we using the gospel reading as the platform for our reflection while touching on the other reading. We are thus reflecting on the theme: “Raising the Lazarus in us”.

The name Lazarus has its root in Hebrew where it is designated as Eleazar and it means “God’s help” or if you like “divine assistance”. Lazarus was the brother of Mary and Martha and they lived in Bethany; they were friends of Jesus Christ. Words came to Jesus that Lazarus was very ill but he did not go immediately; he took two more days. With God no time is too late; He is the Lord of time. Our Lord took two days to confirm the fact that he is the Lord of both the living and the dead.

By the time our Lord arrived, just as he confirmed to his disciples on the way, Lazarus had died and was in the tomb for four days. Many people had gathered to console Mary and Martha over the death of their brother. When Jesus arrived, the sisters declared at various instances that “IF JESUS HAD BEEN AROUND LAZARUS WOULD NOT HAVE DIED”. This declaration is saturated with a lot of meaning. Here we discover faith in the power of the Lord to stop death and give life. Here we see a confirmation of the fact that God can make a lot of difference in any situation that confronts us.

Another scene in the entire episode that needs to be attended to is where Jesus was deeply moved by the sorrows of the bereaved and upon seeing where Lazarus was buried, he wept along with them. The question is why did Jesus weep since he was after all going to raise Lazarus from the dead? Jesus did not weep because the case was hopeless. Jesus did not weep because he was incapable of raising Lazarus up from the dead, he already told the disciples that he was going to do just that. He wept along with Mary and Martha to show that he feels our situation; anything that affects us touches him personally; he empathizes with us.

On another level, Jesus wept over the death of many souls who would not rise with him because they were disconnected from him during their lives on earth. Hence the tears of Jesus was beyond the death and mourning of Lazarus to the deaths and sorrows caused by sin in the world. The tears of Jesus is for us today an invitation to penitence and conversion.

The raising of the dead Lazarus by our Lord took some notable salutary steps. First our Lord asked them to remove the stone that covered the tomb. At death, there is always a separation; more like the stone that built up a dividing line between Lazarus and the rest of the living. This is actually what sin does; creating a barrier between us and God (Isaiah 59:2). Next he looked up and offered a prayer of thanksgiving to God. In all things we are required to give thanks to God (1 Thess. 5:18).

Then with a loud voice our Lord Jesus Christ said “Lazarus come out!” It is by spoken words that God created and there is power in His words. (Heb.4:12). At that command Lazarus came out but with hands, feet and face wrapped with burial clothe and our Lord said “Unbind him, and let him go!” And it was done. There are still many people who assume that they are living but are still going about with hands, feet and face bound. Many of us are in one bondage or the other. Like Lazarus we need to be untied especially during this season. Our Lord Jesus Christ came to set us free so that we can indeed be free not just thinking that we are free (John 8:36).

Raising the Lazarus in us at this time requires us to seek for God’s help (assistance) at all times; like Mary and Martha sent for Jesus to attend to their ailing brother. Whom or what do you turn to when you have similar challenges? Raising the Lazarus in us is a call to unfailing faith and trust: “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” Raising the Lazarus in us requires our being ready and willing to remove the stone that is blocking us from having a direct divine encounter. It is worthy to note that if the stone was not removed Lazarus would not have come out. The stone stands for sin and obstacles to our faith, healing and renewal.


As we gradually march towards the celebration of the death and resurrection of the Lord let us be aptly concerned with raising that Lazarus in us. Have a blissful Sunday and a wonderful week ahead.

Let Us Pray

Lord you answered Mary and Martha and gave them back their lost hope. We humbly implore you to hear our cry for mercy upon our world sickened by the viral epidemic and heal us. Amen.

In this Category

1Lent & Easter Reflections 2020 Monday 30th March 2020.
WALKING WITH GODMONDAY, FIFTH WEEK OF LENTWe are nearing Easter, the experie read more...
2Reflection For 5th Sunday Of Lent
IF JESUS WAS WITH USThe First Reading today (Ezekiel 37:12-14) presents us with the oracle of read more...
3You Are The Salt And Light Of The Earth
Mathew 5 13 30 Following the beatitudes in the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus tells his followers that read more...
4May We Be Presented To You
Luke 2:22-40, Almighty and ever-living God, clothed inmajesty, whose beloved Son was this day< read more...
5Today You Will Be With Me In Paradise
Luke 23: 33 - 43“But this man has done nothing wrong.”Then he said, “Jesus, remember me read more...
6Always Pray And Do Not Lose Heart
Luke 18: 1 - 8 Faith is complex. In our gospel story the widow was persistent in her request. She re read more...
7Develop A Thankful Attitude
Luke 17: 11 - 19 Everyday we receive grace and mercy but how many times do we thank God? We have ma read more...
8Growing In Faith
Luke 17: 5 - 10The disciples asked Jesus to ‘increase their faith’but Jesus replied that read more...
9Lazarus And The Rich Man
Luke 16: 19-31 Life after death remains a mystery for us all. We are yet to know what the colours, read more...
10Whoever Is Faithful
Luke 16: 10 “Whoever is faithful in a verylittle is faithful also in much; and whoeveri read more...
11The Cost Of Being A Disciple
Luke 14: 25 -33Jesus urges us to commit to finishing the discipleship journey once read more...
12God Has Invited Everyone
Luke 14:7 - 14. Jesus’ teaching focuses on how we treat others, especially those among us who are un read more...
13Be On Your Guard Against All Kinds Of Greed
“Be on your guard against all kinds of greed”. Some may question why the man was a fool, read more...
14For Everyone Who Asks Receives
Luke 11 v10 “For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds, and for everyone read more...
15Jesus Healed A Gentile
Luke 8: v33 Then the demons came out of the man and entered the swine, and the herd rushed down the read more...
16Father’s Day Prayer
Heavenly Father,you entrusted your Son Jesus,the child of Mary,to the care o read more...
17Filled With The Holy Spirit
Acts 2 : 3 – 4 Divided tongues, as of fire,appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each read more...
18Peace I Leave With You
John 14: 26 -27 ‘the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everyth read more...
19Bishop Of London Preaching At St.Joseph The Worker
We were very delighted when Bishop preached at out church during the 50th anniversary.

See also ....

1Prayers For Brexit And Halloween Evening
Please come along on Thursday 31st October prior to the Mass at 6.30 - 7.30 p.m. Then continue with read more...
2Spiritual Care And Support For The Elderly
Like all Christians, seniors need the companionship and encouragement of other believers if their fa read more...
38th June 2019, Prayer Walk
Will take place on Saturday 8th June.  Meeting outside St. Hugh's Church (they too have been read more...
4Join Us In The Children And Youths Ministry.
As a church we are love being involved in community life and we want to ensure that we are supportin read more...
5Message From Father Valmor Pimenta
LUKE 5.4-6Verse 4 - Now when he had left speaking, he said unto Simon, Launch out into read more...
6Home/Bible Study Groups For Lent
If you would like to attend a group, host a groupor lead a group please do sign one of the she read more...
7Holy Communion Preparation Classes 2020
First Holy CommunionPreparatory sessions will start on Saturday 15thFebruary at 2.00 p.m read more...
8He Is Not Here, He Is Risen
He is not here; for he has been raised, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay (Matthew 28: 6) read more...
9
USCCB » Bible » Daily Readings March 29 2020 Fifth Sunday of Lent read more...
10All Souls Memorial Service, 3rd November 2019
Our annual memorial service is coming up on Sunday 3rd November. As always we will be offering tea a read more...
119th June, Pentecost Service 2019
Our Pentecost service will take place on June 9th. Donations towards flowers would be very wel read more...
129th June, Christian Aid Cake Sale 2019
A Cake Sale will be held in aid of Christian Aid on June 9th.Our Christian Aid collectio read more...
13Prayers For Our New Priest
At every mass and prayer evening, we pray for ourFuture Priest (Positive mental attitude). How read more...
14Christmas Fayre
Marilyn Obah will be hosting a Arts and Craft Fayre on the 21st December 2019.Time: 12 read more...
15Half Day Of Prayer
Half Day of Prayer on Saturday 16th November at 1 - 4 p.m. Theme is the World. There wil read more...
16Prayer Walk On The 4th October
Prayer Walk THIS FRIDAY AT 6PM, comeand join us, walk around the Radcliffe Estate -
read more...
17Christmas 2019
Christmas and New Year services. Join us, All are welcome.
18St Joseph’s Christmas Card
It is a St Joseph’s tradition to send out a church Christmas card to the congregation – that is one read more...
19Our Worship
Throughout the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s, St. Joseph's has been firmly rooted within the Anglo-Catholic read more...
20Harvest Sunday 2019
Harvest Sunday, this year, falls on the 22nd September. Please see the Harvest Shopping list, read more...

Safeguarding

This parish is committed to the safeguarding, care and nurture of the children and people of all ages in our church community. The parish Safeguarding Policy can be by clicking the links below.
Safeguarding Policy Statement | Who's Who
Home | Check Email | Contact Us | © 2020 St.Joseph The Worker, Northolt,London