The Gift of Tears

By Cindy Hess Casper

I called a longtime friend when his mother died. She had been a close friend of my mother, and now both had passed on. As we spoke, our conversation slipped easily into a cycle of emotion—tears of sorrow now that Beth was gone and tears of laughter as we recalled the caring and fun person she had been.

Many of us have experienced that strange crossover from crying one moment and laughing the next. It’s an amazing gift that emotions of both sorrow and joy can provide a physical release in this way.

Since we are made in God’s image (Gen. 1:26), and humor is such an integral part of almost every culture, I imagine that Jesus must have had a wonderful sense of humor. But we know that He also knew the pain of grief. When his friend Lazarus died, Jesus saw Mary weeping, and “He groaned in the spirit and was troubled.” A short time later, He too began to weep
(John 11:33-35).

Our ability to express our emotions with tears is a gift, and God keeps track of each tear we cry. Psalm 56:8 says, “You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book” (nlt). But one day—we are promised (Rev. 7:17)—God “will wipe away every tear.”

Lord, You have made us to laugh, to cry, to yearn, to love—and to miss those who have gone before us. Help us to love even more deeply, confident in Your goodness and in the resurrection You promise.

Our loving heavenly Father, who washed away our sins,
will also wipe away our tears