Sunday, August 21, 2011

Tears in a Bottle

How many tears have you cried? None? A few? More than you count? I am on the spectrum of innumerable and that is just from this morning. As I was kneeling at the altar this morning after Pastor Ryan's sermon, I began to wonder just how many tears have been shed on this altar, on this very carpet. Hundreds maybe thousands of tears have coursed down cheeks, dripped off noses, dangled from the tips of eyelashes, or been swiped away by shaking fingers. They mostly end up on the carpet of the altar. The carpet is relatively new(5 years or so) and so thousands more will end up there.

The comfort I find is from Psalm 56:8: "You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in a bottle. You have recorded each one in your book." Not only does God care for us but He loves us enough to see each tear AND He makes note of it. Can you believe that? There are roughly 6 billion people on the planet and God sees each tear that fell from my eyes this morning and cared enough to write them down.

This thought overwhelmed me when I told my husband and I started crying again. God overwhelms me! How can He be so big and so personal at the same time? We have been studying the names of God and today Jehovah-Shammah(God is there) was taught. I was overcome at the thought that I had never thanked God for just being there. If He had nothing else besides salvation, just being there would be enough. I knelt at the altar thanking Him for being there when I was a child and was being abused. I thanked Him for being there when I was raped as a young teenager. I thanked God for being there when I was having my abortion. I thanked Him for being there when I almost died having my last child. I thanked God for just being there. His heart broke when mine did, rejoiced when mine rejoiced, and then His heart healed my heart with the salve of joy, mercy, and forgiveness. He showed me just this week how He has been there. I seemed to have lost my purpose and my way. God showed me that the calling He gave me is still my calling.

So now I say, THANKS BE TO THE GOD OF HEAVEN for always being there, Jehovah-Shammah!
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