Listening to the spirit
So when he heard that Lazarus was ill, he stayed two days longer in the place where he was
The obvious thing to do would be to act immediately when you hear that someone is ill, especially in those days when a sickness could easily result in death. But Jesus stayed longer. I was watching Miss Potter last night and when she heard of her to- be fiancé’s sickness she went immediately – there was a sense of urgency that correlated with the level of love she had for Him. Now Jesus loved Lazarus. He would have know what sickness can do in the natural, that time would have been of the essence. Yet he did not have any sense of urgency about him. Thinking about it, it is like Jesus never had any sense of urgency – purposeful and focussed yes. But never urgent, he never was stressed, or hyped over any situation. Nothing seemed to throw him. Even in the garden
before the cross there is a focus a determination to do do what he must, a discipline of heart, a resolve – but he was not panicking.
So Jesus heard of his friend who he loved and he stayed away. The way Jesus operates is sited in john 5:19, he only did what he saw the Father doing. His life was one of fellowship with the Father, following what he saw him doing. Here jesus heard from the father and acted in obedience to what he saw. Listening to the Spirit may be contrary to the natural feeling and emotions we may have. Jesus heard about his dear friend and he stayed away, because that is the leading of the Spirit. Mary and Martha presumed Jesus would come as soon as he heard about their brother and said words to that effect – but there is a wisdom in the spirit that is beyond the natural, God give us ears to hear and a heart to be obedient to what your Spirit is saying! How much more would God be glorified if we listened to the holy spirit.