“Jesus wept.” Arguably, two of the most impactful words in the Bible carry a deeper meaning than can be seen just from the surface. Jesus was perfect. He healed the sick, raised the deceased to life, and lived without sin. Jesus also felt emotions. When the news of Lazarus’ passing spread to Jesus, it drove Him to return to the land of a people that wanted to stone Him. The Bible says Jesus loved Lazarus, but also loved his sisters, Martha and Mary. When He arrived at Lazarus’ grave, Jesus saw Mary weeping, along with others from her community sharing in her grief. Sometimes, a friend in need is waiting for help and a solution is what’s needed. Other times, a friend just wants to be heard. A friend simply wants others to share in their loss, shoulder their burden, and process their pain alongside them; that is exactly what Jesus chose to do. Jesus wept. (John 11:35)
Recently, a Rohingya woman that has been involved in the GoTEN community for several years tragically lost a baby at birth. A parent losing a child is a type of pain that is unimaginable to a person that has not experienced it, but it’s safe to assume that the pain is better processed with support. In the days following the tragedy, two GoTEN team members spent time in the grieving mother’s home. When she needed someone to weep with, they wept. When she needed someone to talk to, they listened. Just as Jesus felt for his friends, made time for them, and shared in their loss, our staff stepped up to do the same for their friend.
Ultimately, Jesus brought Lazarus back to life. Before he did so, he perfectly modeled what it looks like to be there for someone. He showed the world in many ways, including this one, how to love selflessly. The Rohingya people, and refugees as a whole, regularly experience grief. When presented the opportunity, it is our calling, command in fact, to do as Jesus did and stand with our friends.