Hannah, however, got stuck in the middle. As she listened to well-known story, her heart empathized with two sisters. Perhaps it's because Hannah has two sisters of her own, or maybe, it's because she's crazy about her brothers. But for whatever reason, as her Sunday school teacher recounted the miracle, Hannah fixated on Mary and Martha. She imagined what it might have been like if Lazarus had been her brother; she tasted their desperation for a miracle. Hannah empathized with the women's angst as they waited for Jesus to return, and she cried for them when He didn't.
"I just felt so sad for those sisters," Hannah explained from the backseat of the van as she answered my question. "And I just kept thinking how I would have felt if Jesus had let me down."
"But, honey," I prodded, "you know the ending of the story. The sisters got their brother back AND they got to witness a miracle!"
"I KNOW, Mom," Hannah replied. "But the middle can still hurt, even if you know the end."
At that point, I was glad my husband was driving the van. My own tears may have obscured the view. Hannah began to banter with her brother, and I thanked God for the end of His story. Someday this "middle" will fade. We'll shed discouragement, doubt, and dreams deferred like Lazarus shed his grave clothes. But until Jesus returns, we live in the hurt of an unfinished tale, much like two grieving sisters in the little town of Bethany (John 11: 1-43).
Today's Treasure: Look, I am coming soon...I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.
-Jesus (Revelation 22: 12-13)