Opinion Column

Did you cry last night?

By Rev. Eric Strachan

And Jesus said “Come to the waters stand by my side,

I know you are thirsty you won’t be denied,

I felt every teardrop when in darkness you cried,

And I strove to remind you that for those tears I died”

Song “For Those Tears I Died” by Marsha Stevens

Can I ask you, did you cry last night? Lying in bed all alone in the darkness did tears begin to roll down your cheeks? Tell me, why were you crying, or is it just something you can’t talk about?

Are you a senior citizen who’s just beginning to experience widowhood for the first time and living life without your husband is incredibly difficult? Or do these tears come to your eyes because of the blight of loneliness? In those teary moments when you lie awake in the darkness is it because your family rarely visit their mom? Or maybe you’ve just come through a divorce and as a young mother with two little ones you’re wondering how you’re going to manage. Maybe your engagement was broken off and it came completely unexpected, and you’re devastated. Maybe it’s an addiction you’ve tried to conquer for the ‘umpteenth’ time, but this time you lost again and the tears of defeat are flooding the eyes. Maybe you’re in a hospital bed coming through one of the most critical times in your life. There’s a whole variety of reasons why lying in bed last night tears may have come to your eyes.

Pause for a moment and let these words filter into your head and your heart, and never forget them. Jesus Christ, the Lord of the universe, saw every tear you cried. Imagine, despite the size of this world’s population in His infinite knowledge He saw ‘your’ tears!

Today’s headline contains a quotation from the lovely song ‘For those Tears I Died.’ Jesus is saying “I felt every teardrop when in darkness you cried.” These are not just the appealing lyrics of a song by a songwriter who wanted to compose a meaningful tune for people coming through challenging days, they are truth.

Jesus sees every teardrop you shed, and what’s more than that, He deeply empathizes, and what’s more than that, at your request, He can enter into your circumstances and bring emotional relief.

There’s a beautiful story in the Bible about King Hezekiah that illustrates this truth. The king is on his deathbed and has been told his illness is terminal. There he turns his face

to the wall and prays reminding the Lord of how committed he has been throughout his life to following Him. The Bible tells us that as he prayed he “wept bitterly.” (The Bible, 2 Kings 20:1-6) As he was crying God speaks to the prophet Isaiah and says to him, go and tell Hezekiah this, “I have heard your prayer and seen your tears, I will heal you.”

I’m amazed as I read these verses, for Hezekiah was only one among thousands in his land but God cared for him as He does for every man and woman among the billions on this planet.

It was Billy Graham, the renowned evangelist who said, “The Christian life is not a constant high. I have my moments of deep discouragement. I have to go to God in prayer with tears in my eyes and say, ‘O God forgive me,’ or ‘Help me’.”

My dear friend, you who wept last night, who’s reading this column today, take your tears to God, and take also the reason for these tears, the situation or circumstances that brought these tears to flow from your eyes. God will hear you and He will relieve the heavy weightiness of that burden that evoked those teardrops, for tears are a language that God understands.

It was Gord Jensen who wrote these memorable words in the song ‘Tears Are A Language God Understands.’ Said the songwriter, “Often you wonder why, tears come into your eyes/And burdens seem to be much more than you can bear/But God is standing near, He sees your falling tears/Tears are a language God understands.”

That’s so true. If you wept last night, and maybe even the night before, take your tears to God and tell Him all about it. He cares for you my friend...He really does.