I woke this morning to another school shooting!
Mercy … When Will It End?
Tragedy, despair, horrifying heartbreak, grief, disillusionment, disappointment and a growing lack of trust in mankind. Young lives killing their comrades, peers, schoolmates, classmates. It’s terrifyingly common: a blip on the TV screen, another prayer prayed. Then … we go on with the day.
Goodness, why are all the concentrated efforts of the 21st century systems not able to quell these heinous acts? We’ve come so far as a civilization, yet seem unable to protect our children, both perpetrators and victims! It’s sickening, honestly.
I have no grand solution or plans to implement, but I do have hope ……. not in this world!
If you have spent much time inside a church building, you can answer this question….
What is the shortest verse in the Bible?
I see throngs of hands raising and just heard someone over there blurt it out! (Love your “answer enthusiasm”)
Do you remember what Jesus was weeping over?
His beloved friend Lazarus died! He wept over death, his friends’ pain, the state of the world, the consequences of an imperfect world. He empathized with the sisters who grieved. Seeing his cherished friends mourning prompted his mourning. He was deeply troubled and moved to express human grief, as we all do … in tears!
I can’t think of a more tender or loving description of Jesus. Their concerns were his. Their circumstances effected his. Their grief he took on Himself. The greatest example of friendship and love.
He knew every positive outcome of this situation… He was about to resurrect Lazarus, bring him back to life … yet, in the moment he walked with grieving sisters and let their pain become his own. He didn’t diminish their anguish, pointing at future events. He entered it. He knew in just minutes they would be exuberantly rejoicing, but he didn’t interrupt the present. It was a heavy moment of grief. Until Jesus called Lazarus forth, he shared in the loss and grief; weeping with his friends.
My sons’ band wrote and recorded a song called Lazarus. My son and daughter-in-love sang it at my grandson’s celebration of life service. Its lyrics have stuck in my heart for years.
The paradox of this moment…
“I’ve been thinking how you wept with Lazarus,
Tears on your cheeks, Resurrection on your lips…”
While Jesus was grieving, tears rolling down his cheeks, heart broken,
he had resurrection on his lips!
Why did he cry, if he knew?
I think I would have said, “Hey, you don’t have to cry, he’s coming out in a minute … restored to life!” Instead, Jesus entered the reality of the moment, his friend, their brother, was dead! He knew, still he cried! Tears fell from his cheeks, like your cheek and mine. Death gripped him with heartbreak, just like ours. Grief filled him. He loved deeply. He was filled with sorrow. It affected him.
That is where I find hope.
Jesus enters our pain and suffering. He knows what heart ache feels like. His human side experienced every human emotion, and he knows. He knows way beyond us, what resurrections lie ahead, yet, it does not render him unrealistic. nor unconcerned. He knows the deepest pains of this world and empathizes with us. He walks with us to graves and weeps on the way. He lets us call for him, unload and lean in. He allows our burdens to become his own.
He knows and understands the sadness and brokenness of this
world and it sickens him, as well … to tears!
But, it doesn’t constrain or restrict him!
We may grieve and be broken by life’s sad parts,
we know the ending!!
(I’m not sure who to credit this with. I saw it many places.)
Let It Sink In …. Deep Down!
To those grieving or hurting, a quote from my friend, Nicole, @scribe4him:
“Cry, ugly cry, scream to the top of your lungs and weep your heart out til you have no more tears left to cry. You don’t just need to. You have to. It is part of your healing and if you stuff it down or try to be “strong” or leave your grief at the door of your heart, you’ll relive it a thousand more times than you should ever have to. God gave you tears to express your great and overwhelming joy, but also, your great and overwhelming hurt. It will not go away just because you don’t allow yourself the deepness of it.
So feel every single ounce of what is grieving and vexing your soul. It’s the only way out. The healthy way designed by your loving, omniscient, and wise Dad. Even Jesus knew tears and grief are incredibly important to acknowledge. How can we think we could do any less than His example and get a result any less than the healing he planned?”
Weeping as … He wept,