On Easter Sunday, I accepted the challenge and started The Lazarus Experiment. This experiment is in its second year and started by Ron Benson, Pastor at Grace Christian Fellowship in Bay City, Michigan.
In his article “What Would Lazarus Do?” Ron says:
“The resurrection answers a longing that seems to sit on our hearts—the thirst for more of life. The fact of Jesus’ resurrection impacts the way we live and the way we die. If we are Jesus-lovers, we have abundant life through Him. All of that is true, rock-solid and
beyond dispute for a person who believes.
Where I struggle, however, is in how to live that life “to the full.” What does it look like to live abundantly?
When I look at the gospels, one person’s story calls out to me for emulation—Lazarus. Here’s a guy just like me who was dead and buried. (The Bible refers to me as dead in sin before Jesus rescued me). Lazarus was dead for four days, and then Jesus brought him back to life. (The Bible says God has made me alive in Jesus). The portrait of Lazarus is a great representation of my salvation in Christ.”
If you have followed this blog at all, you have read about my second journey, relentless pursuit of Jesus and my desire for radical abandonment in my life. When I “signed up” to Live Like Laz, I didn’t realize it was just a continuation of what God has done in me.
In the story of Lazarus… Jesus stands at Lazarus tomb and cries out, “Lazarus, come forth.” And he that was dead came forth, bound hand and foot with grave-clothes; and his face was bound with a napkin. Jesus said unto them, loose him and let him go. (John 11:43)
Have you ever felt like you just walked out of the tomb? Are your hands and feet bound by grave-clothes?
I have eluded in other posts about how difficult the last five to six years of my life have been. I walked through the death of both of my folks, a year a part. We journeyed through an eating disorder and residential treatment with one of our daughters. There were legal issues, leaving our church and lost friendships. Revelations in which God revealed attitudes and strong holds in my life which quite honestly were not very “nice or pretty!” At times I was able to cry out to my Jesus and other times I questioned my Abba Father.
Little did I realize four days ago that in the simplicity of living like Lazarus, God would call out my name and begin to remove my grave-clothes. Especially since I didn’t even realize there was a stench of death on me!
Without even knowing it the enemy got a foothold in my life during the last few years. My focus went from living life for others to worrying about myself. I have been swimming in a lake of selfishness and self pity and for the most part haven’t even come up for a breath. That is until I started to Live Like Laz!
In the quietness of sitting on the porch, the dancing of my grandson’s eyes while watching a crow, or the simply prayer request of a friend…the graveclothes are being removed. The stench of death is being replaced with the sweetness of life. Living like Laz has become a continuation of my relentless pursuit of Jesus and intensified my desire of radical abandonment of ME!
Max Lucado has a book titled, “It’s Not about Me.” This titles sums up where I am at today. ….The newness of living life not for me…….but for them (others) and Him!