Love Weeps


Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. 1 Peter 1:3-4 (NIV)


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My youngest daughter, Cara Bowen, is a writer and wrote a blog post on the pain and fear our country is experiencing based on recent current events. She beautifully expresses my heart through her words, so I thought I’d share her words with you. 1 Peter 1:3-4 tells us we have a living hope—the resurrected Jesus Christ. I encourage you to keep your eyes on Him as we weep for the brokenness of this world.

By Cara Bowen

“Holding your pain like you’re holding your breath” – The Lumineers

The world has always been filled with pain, but lately it has seemed the world, and our country, is robed in it. Our country waking up each morning with the sun, draping itself with painful events and pain filled hearts.

I’m no expert on the matter of recent events and I don’t really know what to say half of the time, but my heart breaks.

I thought of each mom of an African American child. Waking up to fear, wondering if on this day, her son will be next. I thought of each wife watching her husband grab his badge as he heads out for work, as her fear asks, will he make it home for dinner?

Fear and pain, dancing so closely together underneath the moonlight, they’ve in some ways become one. Love casts out fear, but does love cast out pain? I'm beginning to think it doesn't. When fear and pain are so intermingled, what do we do with the pain we are experiencing and the fear that is far too real of a reality?

Love weeps. 

I first heard these words months ago as, author and researcher, Brene Brown told her own story involving pain and death. Maybe we start there. It reminded me that God is grieving too. God is weeping with us. And he is with us, even when it doesn’t feel like it and even when it seems like he isn’t around. When evil and wrongdoings seem to win, he fights in love and he wins in the end. We’re just not there yet, so love and hope seem lost.

We talk about love, but do we know what love is? Diving into that ocean is another blog for another time, but love has been outlined in a flood of falsehoods, parading around in facades of self-seeking agendas, records of wrong and fear.

I believe Jesus is God and I believe God is love. And Jesus wept. I’m moved by the vulnerability and tenderness of Jesus in those two words. [John 11:35]

Jesus is love. 

Jesus wept. 

Love weeps.

 Jesus paused. He entered into the emotion and reality of the moment. The moment was filled with pain and grief. The moment’s reality of John 11 was Jesus’ best friend, Lazarus, was dead. Jesus wept with his close friends over the loss of a close friend, over family. Jesus didn’t stand there, waiting for them to stop crying, or waiting for the moment to pass. Jesus didn’t ignore the pain, he entered into it with them. He wept. He grieved. Then, He acted. He did the impossible. He restored Lazarus.

Lazarus didn’t die of injustice, but the sting of death still burns and still feels unjust. I don’t envision Jesus watching our country, waiting for us to get it together, for the moment to pass or ignoring the realities surrounding us like a hurricane of hate. Jesus weeps and he enters into the painful events and the painful emotions with us.

Entering into those moments, recognizing our emotions and realities is hard. Reality isn’t always easy and sometimes reality brings waves of pain that seem far too painful to rise above- wondering if you're able to swim to the surface to take a breath. Feeling like you’re overwhelmed and submerged under the water. But the water keeps rising as you’re trying to fight back to the surface. Entering into those moments is rising strong. Not allowing the waves to overcome you, but acknowledging the wave you are riding, trusting you have enough breath to last until you rise to the surface, again.

We all have a tendency to want to swim against the pain, avoiding the current. That’s a false reality. You can’t avoid the current. You can either enter into it or prolong it. Prolonging it is exhausting. You can't out swim water and you can't out swim pain. You can’t avoid pain in life without suffocating.

We hold the pain like we are holding our breath. 

We may not realize we are prolonging pain, avoiding it or holding our breath. The desperation in trying to avoid pain is so loud that we don’t recognize the noise anymore. So, we take a deep breath as the water rises and tread in anger, blame and avoidance. Or we numb.

Sometimes God numbs us and sometimes we numb ourselves. Sometimes the pain is too deep, too overwhelming for our hearts to handle. God graciously numbs so we only deal with pieces of the pain at a time. Dealing with it all at once would be too big of a tidal wave for us humans to face. Then, there is the unhealthy numbing. The type of numbing we do ourselves: suppressing, ignoring, intoxicating, filling the void with anything else we can grasp so we don’t feel the twinge of pain, again.

Brene said, “When we dumb the darkness, we numb the light.” In other words, when we numb the pain, we numb the joy. We numb the hope.

We need hope to resurface again. We need hope within us and within our country to come out from underneath the suffocation of hate and to see the light out of the darkness.

Weep forward.

I don’t know all the why’s or how’s in the midst of these latest events, but I do know it takes strength to weep with Jesus, to hope for God to bring an end to all of the injustice, to weep in love. “In God we trust”- our country was built on these words. It was built on the three-strand twine of trust, strength and unity. I weep over what has happened and I hope we wrap ourselves in our founders’ twine while pain hangs on us.

After the last couple of weeks, you may feel hopeless, broken or emotions you don't know how to identify quite yet. You may be dealing with your own personal weeping while the country at large cries as well.

We are not alone. You are not alone. Weep forward in hope that love is weeping with you. Weep in love and weep with love.

The SipMindy Fletcher