The fires rage in me. I can find no rest. I am racked with pain. Every sound is a blow that crushes, every light a knife that pierces. I hear Mary and Martha as through a dream or from far away, as if they were in Caesarea Phillipi and not here with me in our house in Bethany.
I sense their anxiety as they confer in hushed tones. I hear them imploring someone to find our friend Yeshua. Yes Yeshua. I have seen him touch someone and make him well. And even if he would not make me well again, there is something about his very presence that brings such comfort.
But I fear it is too late. Although Martha still tenderly wipes the sweat from my face, I cannot feel her touch. There is a strange coldness in my limbs, working its way inward. It has my heart in its icy grip and squeezes hard. Darkness is crowding out the light
A breeze perfumed with the scent of olives dances lightly with the promise of spring. I awaken to hear a voice calling my name, commanding me to come forth. I feel the blood rushing through my veins with the pent up force of streams breaking free of winter's ice. Strength like I've never felt is lifting me from the cold stone bed. I am moving forward, irresistibly drawn toward that voice. I see dimly through a veil of some sort. My limbs are constrained in some strange way. The veil is taken from my eyes. I see Yeshua smiling broadly before me, joy reflected in the moisture of recent sorrow in his eyes. I see Mary and Martha and many others, their faces a fine balance of fear and delight.
Yeshua speaks, "Remove his grave clothes, and let him loose!"
Ken Bridge is a former policeman and pastor who lives in Northern Virginia.