We’ve had a fair amount of rain the last few days. Also warmer temperatures. Rain has a wonderful way of cleansing the air and refreshing God’s creation.
I met with a grieving family in my early years of ministry. As we talked about the service for their loved one, it was pouring down rain outside. I remember saying that God seemed to be crying, too. And I remember afterwards thinking that that was a dumb thing to say.
Tears are God’s way of cleansing the soul. We met with Lorraine Fortunati at Wednesday Night Live last week. The subject was “Re-creating One’s Life After Loss”. Tears are part of that re-creation. Tears of sadness. Tears that hurt but that also heal.
But here’s the amazing thing about God’s gift of tears: God made us so we will cry in our hardest, most painful moments and God also made us so we will cry in our happiest, most exultant moments. Tears of joy. The same tears that came with feelings of sadness and hopelessness can also signal that you’ve made it through and you are beginning to see the rainbow of hope. Rainbows, of course, are possible only when there has been rain.
When is the last time you had a good cry? I am married to a woman who cries easily. Me, not so much. But one of my favorite sights in the world is the sparkle of light dancing in her eyes when her eyes have watered up because she’s too happy for words.
Maybe rain is not God crying out of sadness. Maybe rain is God crying for joy. And maybe that long ago day as I met with that grieving family, the rain was telling us that death is not the end. Death is resurrection. So grieve, but not as those who have no hope (I Thessalonians 4:13). A rainbow is coming. That’s God’s promise.