The Beauty of Tears

How is it possible to love a sparrow, or a chicken, or hamster, or any other animal?

I was discussing this today with a friend, and realized something I’d never really put into words before. When you put time and love into something, you get attached.

So, when a pet dies, we cry.

I had a student, who I’ll call Sreylee. (Not her real name.) Sreylee was in my English class for a year, and worked hard. She was always near the top of my class. And furthermore, Sreylee wanted to learn more about Jesus.

Then her family pulled her out of school.

And watching her walk away… I cry.

It wasn’t her choice to leave. But in a country where 97.1% are Buddhist, following Jesus takes a real commitment, since that decision means leaving behind your friends, neighbors, and sometimes even your family. I never had any extra-special connection to Sreylee, but I put time and love into my students, and I get attached. I pray every day for her to be in heaven. How, I don’t know. Nor do I care. As long as she is there. And if my giving up something would make that possible, I am more than ready.

You know these tears… The tears we cry over a pet, passed away. The tears we cry over a person we may never see again, a person who is looking for God’s love.

Jesus has put infinitely more into each of us than we are even capable of. Even if we were to give up our life for someone, which you and I have never done, it wouldn’t compare… For we’d only be giving up this temporary life. He was willing to give up his eternal life. On the cross, when He bore the sin of the world, we are told that God the Father, though definitely present, had to turn His back. And Jesus could no longer sense His presence. He did not have the assurance of being resurrected. And yet, He stayed on the cross.

Why? For you. For me.

If then, Jesus has put this much love and care into each one of us, imagine the tears He cries over every mistake, every failure, we make. Imagine the joy that fills His heart every time we learn something new from the Bible or spend time talking to Him. Imagine his elation over each of His children that give their hearts to Him, His agonizing heartbreak over each one who walks away.

I want to share in that joy, those tears. Father, may I?

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Adventist Frontier Missions or any other organization.

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8 thoughts on “The Beauty of Tears”

  1. Pastor Jim Anderson

    Hi Jared,

    And to think that God saves our tears in a bottle (Psa. 56:8) tells us volumes about how much God cares for us!

  2. nancy VonBergen

    You’ve said it so well, Jared. the swallows are busy in the barn. I remember your kindness pictures. We do love what we spend time with. How much God loves His creation. He is omnipresent, all powerful and has the depths to hurt, equal to His ability to love. Keep reaching his children, shedding tears when appropriate. Love you and miss you. Mrs.

  3. Robin and LaRenne Lacey

    Thx, Jared, for sharing your heart. You are experiencing the depth of God’s love as you shower it on the precious children you teach. Glad you’re having a wonderful time of growth! We pray for you every evening. Robin and LaRenne

  4. Definitely sharing this and thank you. You probably won’t know yet how much of an impact it can have. Imagine, sometimes we can walk away from God looking for His love in other things or people, only to meet with disappointment and misery. It’s like Eve wandering in the garden and didn’t realize she was coming close to the tree she was forbidden to come near. And of course she met with a choice. Some are forcefully pulled away and others are lured to other things. When you mention Christ, about his heart agonizing-darn, i know how it feels.

    For a few months, I worked as a teacher aide for different grades. The kids drove me crazy at times but the more time and effort I gave to them, the more I grew attached. I don’t see those kids anymore but I miss them to death. And of course, other life events happened. It’s so good that at the end of your article, you bring it down to the individuals. He would understand our hurt because he has felt it himself. I hope his tears would be mine too so i can love some people I don’t even want in my life. Not only that, but because he loves me.

    Anyways, thanks again. Your article was refreshing to read. Take care!

    1. Jared Ratcliff

      Wow, it’s true. I am so thankful for His love! Eve never could undo the choice she made, but thank God that it seems she owned her mistake and returned to Him. I pray the same for my students!! But the tears in the meantime… They’re real.

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