If you ever want to a word study through Scripture that will break your heart, do a word study on tears. Just a quick glance will reveal painful examples such as the following:
- My friends scorn me: [but] mine eye poureth out [tears] unto God. – Job 16:20
- I am weary with my groaning; all the night make I my bed to swim; I water my couch with my tears. – Psalm 6:6
- Oh that my head were waters, and mine eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night for the slain of the daughter of my people! – Jeremiah 9:1
- And straightway the father of the child cried out, and said with tears, Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief. – Mark 9:24
- Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears. – Acts 20:31
But just as there are heartbreaking verses, so are there ones that offer hope for the hurting, hope for the ones who cry.
- Thou tellest my wanderings: put thou my tears into thy bottle: [are they] not in thy book? – Psalm 56:8
- For thou hast delivered my soul from death, mine eyes from tears, [and] my feet from falling. – Psalm 116:8
- They that sow in tears shall reap in joy. – Psalm 126:5
- And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. – Revelation 21:4
Don’t Waste Them
A while back I met with a young couple for pre-marital counseling. During the two hours that we sat and talked, I took the opportunity to share with them some some painful experiences from my past. I thought it would be helpful for them to hear from someone who knew what consequences felt like, what it was like to shed tears.
You see, even though my wife and I have been married for over 26 years, we have had our share of pain; we’ve shed our bottles full of tears. And precisely because of those times, I was able to look into that young couple’s eyes and say with all authority, “Do it God’s way! It’s worth it!”
King David knew what it was like to experience God’s chastisement, but he also knew something good would come from it. He said, “weeping may endure for the night, but joy comes in the morning” (Psalm 30:5). Part of that joy, I believe, is when we see the fruit of yielding ourselves to the Father and seeing Him use our tears to water the seeds of wisdom we sow into others.
Tears are inevitable; everyone will shed them. The tragedy is when no lesson is learned, God is not trusted, and what could have been turned into joy sours the pillow of hopelessness.
Without God, tears are spilt; with God, no tear is wasted.