Jesus, Lazarus, and Rick Warren

To live your life striving to be a reflection of Christ is hard. To live your life as a leader in the church trying to help others live as reflections of Christ is hard. To live your life on a large public platform as a leader in the church trying to help a global community live as reflections of Christ is probably close to insanity. (James 3:1)

This past week, the family of Rick Warren suffered a tremendous loss: the life of a child.

They are public figures and as such have taken on a responsibility to public life, which includes publicly sharing this loss of life. At a time when I would want the world to turn a blind eye to me, the Warrens have garnered worldwide attention with their tragedy.  Some of that attention has shown the goodness of God’s love prevalent in the world. Some of that attention has shown the sickness of the human heart. I paused today after seeing some inappropriate responses to the Warren’s situation that were related to criticizing his theology and/or ministry:  Why would these things even cross a person’s mind at such a time?  There is one most excellent example in responding to death from the Scriptures:

Jesus wept. weepingjesusbw

When the Lord’s friend died, he did not give lengthy discourses on sin or evil or even on why death comes upon us all. He did not analyze Lazarus’ theology, ministry, or life. Jesus, being God, had the knowledge to critique his friend’s life and to do so with perfection. But what did he do? He grieved…out loud.

Rick – It is hard to be a public figure. It is certainly harder when a loved one dies. Press on, brother.  You are greatly loved.


Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Romans 12:15

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