Love through tears
As much as I hate going though trials there are always lessons to be learned and ways to grow. I supposed this is true about anything we go through in life. I have recently learned a lesson that I wish no one had to know, but it is invaluable at the same time.
As Christians, how should we act when our friend is going through a trial? Many of us are quick to quote scripture, pray, hug and talk. All of these are good things and can be very comforting, and yet there is something more comforting that I never noticed before.
When Mary, Lazarus’ sister, said to Jesus “Lord, if you would have been here when we called for you my brother would not be dead.” And she proceeded to show Jesus were Lazarus was laid Jesus saw the sisters sorrow for their dead brother and wept. He did not wait until he went home, he wept openly because his friend was so deep in sorrow.
I forget a lot of the words that were said to me the worst days of my life, but I don’t forget the Doctor who had just met me for the first time, as she held me close with tears running down her face as she told me of the death of my child, the friend who held my hand and silently cried as I labored in the hospital. I will never forget the man at the funeral home who got choked up as he told us of the arrangements we could make for our daughter. There are so many others who cried with us during that horrible time and it proved their love and that we were not alone in our hurt. It meant more than any words that could have been said.
Weeks later as I returned to work, my first day back I was talking to a friend who I could tell was having a difficult time. Without even asking any questions, he began to tell me of the trials he was facing. I was so overwhelmed with sadness for him. I wanted to help so much but all I could do is sit and listen with tears in my eyes, some even rolling down my face. As I went back to my desk I wished there was something I could do to help, and I prayed and cried, what else could I do?
I shared this with my dad that next day over the phone, and he said that might have been the best thing I could have done for my friend to show how much I cared. I thought and remembered all the people I watched cry with me as I went through my hardest days and realized, to empathize and pray may be the simplest things we can do as we help people through trials, but they are also the best things we can do. In Showing the World the love of Christ the best thing we can do is follow the example of his life while he was here on Earth.
Jesus knew the outcome, he knew God was in control. He knew Lazarus would live again, and yet he saw the sorrow of his friends and wept. If we have read the end of the book we know the outcome of all things ultimately. We know what will happen at the end of time. The verses below from Rev 21 give us so much hope, but until that time we are called to love as we all walk through trials due to the sin in the world, that will one day be removed completely.
Rev 21:1. Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. 2. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. 3. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. 4.‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”