Is there news of his arrival?
Have they seen him on the way?
How we need his hand of healing,
How we need his strength to pray!
Yet this waiting, wretched waiting,
While our brother slips away.
Was the message given promptly?
Was he begged to make all speed?
Was he told our fears for Lazarus?
Was he made to see our need?
Oh be coming, please be coming,
Jesus, hasten! Intercede!
Down the road at last, his figure,
But alas, then much too late.
“Had you been a little sooner,
Lord, you might have changed his fate.
But our brother, precious brother
Has already passed death’s gate.”
Then he asked that we might take him
To the place where Lazarus slept;
And we passed through friends and family,
All who tearful vigil kept;
And we heard the Master groaning.
And we watched as Jesus wept.
At the tomb door, still our champion,
Praying through our wicked doubt,
He addressed the bitter fact of death
With victory and a shout;
There the Master, still the Master,
Crying, “Lazarus, come out!”
And the place of death was shaken
By the challenge which he hurled.
And the soul of him once taken
Was recovered to our world.
Thank you Jesus for our brother!
And the graveclothes were unfurled.
How I pale now at the memory
Of my thoughts and words of fear,
And of pitiful self-pity
Which would deem Christ insincere.
He was caring, deeply caring,
Ever strong and ever near.
He had purpose in delaying
Which was far beyond our view;
And when everything seemed lost he proved
Both trustworthy and true
To a mighty love that neither
Grave nor death could e’er subdue.