RUNNING FROM TEARS
Even in laughter the heart may be in pain, and the end of joy may be grief. Proverbs 14:13
That which is breaking our heart is often difficult to acknowledge. Somewhere beneath our sanguine exterior, a grief pokes at us constantly, begging for acknowledgment. Too frightening to embrace and process, we can run from it, sometimes indefinitely.
I am often aware of the sad eyes at social gatherings. Those who regale others with the funniest stories of the evening can be the very ones who cry themselves to sleep in private agony.
Samuel Johnson, one of the most prolific writers of the eighteenth century, underscores the truth of Solomon’s words. “While grief is fresh, every attempt to divert it only irritates. You must wait till it be digested, and then amusement will dissipate the remains of it.” He says what we all know to be true. Face it. Grieve it. Heal from it. But ultimately, everything boils down to a spiritual issue. Why does mankind run from pain?
Let me narrow the playing field. Why did I run from my own painful issues for thirty five years? Because I didn’t trust God. We did not have an intimate relationship that would bear the weight of such a journey. While I certainly would have answered questions on a test about God’s character accurately regarding traits like faithfulness, unconditional love, and redemption, my heart was not engaged to experience these things from Him firsthand. To pour out the frightening contents of one’s heart requires an absolute trust of the One who will receive it.
While we play pretend, God notices. He is already intimately acquainted with the events that have shaped our grief. He knew the instant they happened that we would bear deep scars. He also hoped, all this time, that we would not stuff them out of sight. He, the healer and redeemer, is reaching out to draw us to Himself. He has everything we need to navigate this valley and reach the other side. Time, insight, perception, comfort, and healing. Oh, for the day when our laughter is not shallow but instead, bears the evidence of a joy too abundant to conceal.
Let me be Your instrument today, restoring others’ broken trust in you. In Jesus’ name, Amen