Tears and Tears

You who tear yourself to pieces in your anger, is the earth to be abandoned for your sake?

Job 18:4

Streams of tears flow from my eyes, for your law is not obeyed.

Psalm 119:136

I look at the news, and I see tears. And tears.

Tears (teers) of pain, death, and suffering, as the tyranny of a ruler tears (tares) at the fabric of stability. No matter how you pronounce it, the word describes the unfortunate fragile state of the world.

The Bible has plenty of entries for both versions of the word. The bitter tears of a broken people. Those in mourning tearing their garments in anguish. Both describe a brokenness that is not easily mended.

Not easily mended, but not impossible to mend. That which has been torn can be brought back together. Ask the exiles, separated from their country, filled with hope for reconciliation and reunion. Those who are in despair can be fulfilled. Flip through the Psalms and you will see mourning turned to dancing, time and again.

When things are dire, that’s when, paradoxically, God can become more visible to us. When everything looks dark, when evil threatens to overtake, that’s when the eternal presence of Love becomes even more revealed. When day-to-day security is taken away, we see the behind-the-scenes Ground of Our Being that can be obscured by our distracted lives.

God is drying eyes. God is mending what has been ripped apart. God is on the scene–has been, all along. God is on the move, filling up God’s people with a promise of a day…

when there are no more tears.

Grace and Peace,


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