Tears are Not a Lack of Faith

Tears are Not a Lack of Faith

Tears rolled down my face. I couldn’t stop them.

I heard the platitudes. “He’s been with you a long time.” “He’s lived a long life.” I knew that, but the pain of loss still thundered through my heartDad and me

My dad’s been gone for almost six years. I still miss him. I sobbed the day we celebrated his life. I needed to cry. I couldn’t respond any other way. I loved my dad, a quiet man who set his example by living his life. He loved God, and for that I am thankful. I know he’s with Jesus and I’ll see him again. But all that knowledge didn’t stop the tears.

Lamentations 2:11
My eyes fail from weeping,
I am in torment within;
my heart is poured out on the ground
because my people are destroyed,
because children and infants faint
in the streets of the city.

weepingIn my Bible reading I’ve been going through the book of Lamentations. Jeremiah’s grief over the loss of the city of Jerusalem wakened an aha moment in me. Even though Jeremiah trusted God and knew his Lord was at work, it was okay for him to cry and mourn the destruction of the city. Jeremiah’s eyes failed to see because they were so full of tears. His heart wrenched with sadness, because he was tormented. He had to cry, yet he still trusted God.

When tears come in times of grief and sadness, go ahead and cry. Cry out to God and shed tears of sorrow. God gave us emotions as a response to circumstances. Even Jesus wept. Crying isn’t a sign of weakness or a lack of faith. Our hearts are created to carry the weight of our sadness, our tears let out the overflow. God hears us and knows our hearts. He brings comfort and peace.

Isaiah 49:13
Shout for joy, you heavens; rejoice, you earth; burst into song, you mountains! For the Lord comforts his people and will have compassion on his afflicted ones.

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Penny Frost McGinnis About Penny Frost McGinnis

Penny Frost McGinnis writes devotions, book reviews, and thoughtful posts on her blog, "Hope for Today's Heart." Blessed with five children and eleven grandchildren, she and her husband live in southwest Ohio with two sweet dogs. When she's not working at the local academic library or spending time with family, she enjoys reading, writing, nature, sewing, and praising God.

Comments

  1. I’ve been reading Lamentations, too. Along with Jeremiah’s grief, he also seemed to go through feeling abandoned by God, yet he knew that wasn’t true. He waited for God’s work to be complete, and he knew the end of the story. And it was good.

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  2. It sure was good, Linda. Jeremiah is a true example of what it means to keep the faith.

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  3. Tina Dorward says:

    Thanks for your post Penny. I really dislike when people share those phrases that they think are helpful but really aren’t. I try to remember they’re not intentionally being hurtful but all the same, I’d rather have some stay quiet and give me a hug then say any one of the many platitudes people say.

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  4. Thank you, Tina. In those situations it’s best to nod and go on. We all mean we’ll.

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