Home Church: Life is Out of Order with Lazarus

Here’s an easy, no-prep Home Church idea for you! All you need is a roll of toilet paper. No worry – you can save it afterwards and use later!

For these Sundays leading up to Easter, each member of our family is taking a turn leading Home Church. We’re choosing passages from the gospels to help us focus on Jesus’ life and knowing him. This is comforting and encourages our faith through this stressful time, and prepares our hearts for Easter.


Last Sunday was my turn. I was drawn to the Lazarus story in John 11 because everything was “out of order” in it. Mary and Martha wanted Jesus to come in person and heal Lazarus so he wouldn’t die – they wouldn’t have dreamed of him dying and then being healed! Things weren’t working out the way people would write it. This feels similar to our current circumstances in the unknowns of this COVID-19 outbreak.

While God’s timing and way of responding was different than Mary and Martha hoped, this passage allows us to see how Jesus loved and cared for his friends.

All you need is a roll of toilet paper, and the handout with John 11 and discussion questions that I’ve provided below!

A simple plan for Home Church that’s worked for our family is this:

  1. Read a passage that has story and action. Sometimes we’ve listened to a recorded version of the Bible, or we take turns reading it aloud. For John 11 we each read it silently.
  2. Read it a second time and act it out. Sometimes, one person reads aloud, or we play the recorded version, and silently act it out. This time, I highlighted each person’s part and we read aloud while acting it out (this is a little more tricky!). Richard read Jesus’ words, Ellie was Mary and Martha, Aubrey was Lazarus, and I was the narrator/messenger/disciples.
  3. Discuss some questions to help us grow in understanding and apply it to our lives.
  4. Finally, we close by praying together and singing along with a YouTube worship song. We like ones that provide the words. Sometimes the song relates to the passage, or it’s one of our favorite worship songs. This time, we sang one of our favorites, Reckless Love by Cory Asbury.


I used biblegateway.com to print out there Lazarus story in John 11. We’ve found that it’s easiest if all four of us read from the same Bible translation, and the New Living Translation works well because it’s an accurate translation written in everyday language.

Here’s the Lazarus Home Church handout with the Bible passage and questions our family used. Please enjoy using it with your family, or those you live with!

One of the questions is, “How did Jesus comfort his friends?” Some of the things our family saw in this passage were: he goes to his friends, weeps with them, reminds them  who he is, reassures them that there is future hope beyond this life, and ultimately, we see him meet their practical need when he resurrects Lazarus. Do you see any other things?

And, yes – I did save the toilet paper! Why waste it in times like this?


What has worked well for you for Home Church? What are you going to try this Sunday? Please share your ideas to encourage others!

For additional encouragement during during this Coronavirus outbreak, see my #livewellwhilein posts on Intragram, live.and.love.well, or Facebook, Live a Life of Love.

Kathryn Featherstone is a Gallup-Certified Strengths Coach and a board-certified Christian Life Coach, who helps people live and love well out of their strengths and their relationship with Christ. She’d like to encourage you in your journey! Write her a note or see her Coaching page.


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