What made you cry?
Come on. You can be honest. You are sitting, possibly alone with your computer, this is a blog asking the questions, you don’t have to tell anyone.
Now, next question. Who could you turn to after you cried? Was there someone who you could talk to about whatever it was?
I cry for many reasons. I have noticed tears are often triggers for an explanation of the deepest people relations, pains, joys, sorrows, anger and experiences in life that tug my heart. In a way, our tears can be a sign of our need of or expression of intimacy. Not the sex kind. The deeper one, the soul kind.
One of our greatest needs as people is to be known. We were created that way.
There will be some people who by definition are “criers” and some who very rarely cry, but what makes us cry and who we can turn to during those times are an interesting gauge of our levels of honest intimacy in life with others. It is a reflection of our ability to empathize, connect, be transparent, and have real people who will be allowed in enough to touch our souls, to be real with, to just be with instead of letting the shame of tears make us withdraw more. What makes us cry says something about us. Who we turn to says something different about us. The second one even more will tell me about someones ability to be known and transparent, how well they have intimate relationships.
I know perfectly well that some of you never cry (I find this baffling and have said to some friends.. “What is wrong with you?” lol. ) You do not need to be a crybaby like me.. but take some personal eval time: what does what you cry about say about you? I bet your tears or lack thereof show something.. about your fears, dreams, passions, joys, and ability to connect with others in intimate relationships where your soul is known and bare.
I had a conversation recently with a good friend and it was about the topic of honesty and intimacy with others. Her question was “How?” On some reflection, I think some of my answers to begin would be the following:
1.) Move towards people. In a real way. Let them know what is actually going on in your life. Choose to. It’s a decision you can make.
2.) Evaluate what your substitutes are for real intimacy. People go to control, food, sex, exercise, drugs, shopping, Facebook, lots of shallow relationships that feel like popularity but are void of real meaning and being known, dancing can be a substitute for me (this was a new revelation tonight), alcohol, busyness (also another of my substitutes). What is your fix? It could be a good thing.. but if you are going to it in the wrong time and place.. then it can own you and ruin your ability to have real intimacy.
3.) What do your tears (or sorrows if you are less of the actual manufacturing of salt and water kinda person) say about what is tugging on your heart? Does nothing? Are you numb? Is there unresolved anger with someone? Lack of forgiveness? A passion that you should pay attention to because it grabs you when you speak? Your pride is taking over your life? Something painful being brought to the surface in need of healing? Pay attention. It may be an area that needs attention, a story needing told, a joy to grab hold of, or something to dig deeper at and allow God to heal.
On Sunday evening I left a dance studio and arrived at church late as I often am to things and just had missed the first song. My church was full already so I made my way up to one of the balconies. Upon arriving, there were some prayers and another song began. Not long after the song’s first chords were played, I began to weep. Not the little kinda teary-eyed-brush-the-single-tear-away-lightly but the kind where I really needed a box of tissues and I was sure my face was a mess. Every lyric of the song pierced my soul over and over. I don’t know you all in blogland and it’s not the place to have real intimacy so you only get a couple snippets of what was going on but each word of the song reminded me of the sweetness and hope of Jesus in what has been a hopeless and sad and angering battle lately. My tears were a signpost of pain, deep deep betrayal and hope and truth all at once. I cried because as much as I have battled God lately, I was being reminded he is my hope, and promise and sureness and I am secure. As alone as I feel sometimes, I am not alone. Despite the hopelessness that some situations feel and wounds that never heal, in a song, I was reminded that there is hope and his name is Jesus.
In an instant. I knew it. I know it. I have known it. Jesus reminded me again Sunday night that he is the anchor and hope and love that is more sure than anything else I know in life. For that reason I wept.
The fight to continue believing the good news of Jesus is real and true in the worst hellishness of life and what will change all the brokenness I have known suddenly came like a rush when these words were being sung. The battle was real and I was a weary soul. I knew as I wept that nevertheless, I was held and every word of that song soaked into my weary heart and was more real than oxygen.. “and the life that I now live, no longer is my own, Jesus lives in me, the hope of glory.”
There is a hope so sure, a promise so secure:
The mystery of God at last made known.
Treasures so vast appear,
All wisdom, knowledge here:
It’s Christ in us, the hope of glory!
And the life that I now live no longer is my own,
Jesus lives in me, the hope of glory.
And each day I live no longer is my own,
Jesus lives in me, the hope of glory.
There is a life so true, a life of love so pure,
For all our sin a perfect sacrifice.
And when that life was nailed,
On cruel cross impaled,
our sinful flesh with him was crucified.
There is a life so strong, that a whole world of wrong,
And all the powers of hell could not defeat.
For Jesus rose again,
And if we died with him,
With him we’ll rise to share his endless life.