Wednesday, March 3, 2010

An Old Book and Tears in a Bottle

Far from being a musty, dusty ancient book, the Bible is an incredibly honest letter from God as up-to-date, relevant and direct as any media presentation. God talks quite honestly about how He responds to things He doesn't like. Proverbs talks about seven things God hates, and it's not a pretty list:
  • a proud look
  • a lying tongue
  • hands that shed innocent blood
  • a heart that devises wicked schemes
  • feet that run to mischief
  • a false witness who speaks lies
  • anyone who causes strife between brothers (Proverbs 6:16-19)
That's a list of seven but the list goes on! God hates divorce, sin, spiritual snobs and more. God haes the mess we make of the beautiful creation He planned and spoke into being!

Joni Eareckson Tada writes, "Besides sin, God has a strong distaste for suffering. ... In Judges 10:16 God is watching the Amonites beat up on God's people. The Jews cry out in prayer and toss out their idols. Finally - here's the line - God "could bear Israel's misery no longer." His tenderness was roused by human anguish. ... Suffering to God, is distasteful, to say the least. God is truly grieved at how we've ruined the world and abused each other. This grief is partly why He gave the Ten Commandments: Don't murder, He says - I hate unjust killling. Don't commit adultery - I despise seeing families ripped apart." (Joni Eareckson Tada, When God Weeps, p. 80)

When we come teeth-rattling smack-up against all the ugliness of life in all its unvarnished glory, GOD CARES! When we face ugly, condescending pride raining on our heads or lies spoken in dark corners to damage our hearts and reputations or evil hands that shed innocent blood or hearts that just delight in dreaming up evil schemes or feet that run to mischief and destruction or a false witness who speaks lies or ANYONE who stirs up trouble between "brothers" - It's in those painful life situations when we suffer that we are most likely to find God's hand reaching out to wipe away our tears!

When we cry bitter tears over unjust treatment at the hands of others, God comes in to take our side, to stand with us, indeed to take careful note of our tears. God told King Hezekiah, "I have heard your prayer and I have seen your tears." (Is. 38:5, 2 Kings 20:5) Psalm 56:8 tells us that God keeps track of our tears - both written and visual records. God records each tear in His "Tear Journal." God keeps a few of our tears' DNA for His tear bottle (lachrymatory)!

Why does God care about my tears and yours? Can it be they speak a special language that reaches the very heart of God? It must be so! The same caring God is also the One who promises to wipe every tear away on that wonderful day when He also makes everything NEW! (Rev. 21:5)

Our tears either drive us further into the darkness of our own pity parties or they propel us into the loving arms of Jesus!

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