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Tears.  We know very well about tears.  Tears are the first signs of grief. They are found on the face of the widow as she turns from the grave following the funeral of her husband. Tears are on the face of the mother whose daughter dressed in white is about to marry “that” young man. Tears are evident when a young son or daughter heads to a war zone in our military.

Because of so much violence, we often see the survivors of a mass shooting or terrible bombing stand before cameras weeping as they tell what happened in a time of horrific terror.  Following the great number of natural disasters this year, tears have been evident on the faces of the victims of flooding and storms as well as on rescuers who are so fatigued and broken by what they have seen, they shed tears freely.

In the Bible, tears are frequently mentioned because they are so much a part of the journey of mankind.  Psalm 42:3My tears have been my food day and night, while all day long people say to me, “Where is your God?”  Psalm 56:8You Yourself have recorded my wanderings. Put my tears in Your bottle. Are they not in Your records?  Psalm 119:136My eyes pour out streams of tears because people do not follow Your instruction.  Psalm 126:5Those who sow in tears will reap with shouts of joy.  Jeremiah 9:1Oh that my head were a spring of water, my eyes a fountain of tears, I would weep day and night over the slain of my dear people. Lamentations 3:48My eyes flow with streams of tears because of the destruction of my dear people.

Tears are what moved the heart of Jesus in the home of a Pharisee named Simon.  Scripture records that the “woman who had lived a sinful life” came as an unexpected guest to the formal dinner Simon was hosting for Jesus.  Being a Rabbi, it was not ever proper for Jesus to touch or be touched by a woman.  Yet this “sinful woman” broke protocol.   Luke 7:38 and stood behind Him at His feet, weeping, and began to wash His feet with her tears. She wiped His feet with the hair of her head, kissing them and anointing them with the fragrant oil.  When she poured out her tears on His feet and wiped His feet with her hair, Jesus spoke the words that any “sinner” longs to hear, “Your sins are forgiven.” (v.48). “Your faith has saved you. Go in peace.” (v.50).

In his retirement, Thomas Jefferson founded the University of Virginia. Because Jefferson trusted that students would take their studies seriously, the code of discipline was lax. Unfortunately, his trust proved misplaced when the misbehavior of students led to a riot in which professors who tried to restore order were attacked. Jefferson called a meeting and said, “This is one of the most painful events of my life.” Suddenly he was overcome by emotion and burst into tears. The rioters were asked to come forward and give their names. Nearly everyone did. Later, one of them said, “It was not Mr. Jefferson’s words, but his tears.” Just like the student was moved by Jefferson’s brokenness, so is God by ours.  (Copied).

A day is coming when the child of God will not even remember what tears were. Remember one day soon, the reality of our hope will be made sight! We will be home with God to the reality that God’s dwelling place is now among His people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. (Rev.21:3-4).