Tears in His Bottle

Oh it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…Isn’t it?! A time to celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus! A time for families and friends to gather and rejoice!

As well as…a time of hustle and bustle…crowded shopping malls…crowded parking lots…pumpkin spice lattes…gingerbread cookies…yes it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

But as this Christmas approaches, what is considered to be a joyful season and a celebration of the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus may unfortunately be for some a season of hurt…a season of pain…a season of heartbreak…a season of grief…as memories and reminders surround you of someone or something that is missing.

Memories and reminders of a tragedy…a loss…recently or years passed.

Maybe the loss of a loved one… loss of a spouse…loss of a child…loss of a parent…

Maybe the loss of a relationship…a marriage…with your child…with a friend…

Maybe the loss of a job… the inability to provide for your family…

Maybe the loss of your health…a terminal illness…an unbearable physical pain…

Maybe you or someone you know is struggling this Christmas season…

Maybe you have shed many tears and still do in your pain…

Maybe these tears are shed for others or with others as sorrow or remembrance of a loss or tragedy…

Maybe these tears are shed in private…behind closed doors… because no one seems to understand the pain you are suffering or how much you hurting…

How can you find comfort and healing in a season that is supposed to be full of joy…full of happiness…full of hope?

My desire is to shed a new light on your shed tears…to all those hurting this holiday season…God sees and knows all the tears you have shed! Yes! Our truly amazing God of comfort…God of hope…God of love…He knows and understands…especially when no one else does!

Not only are your tears precious to God but He collects them and places them in a bottle. Each and every tear you have shed has been recorded in His book. I know so because He says so! Check out David’s prayer in Psalm 56:8…

You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book. NLT

Record my misery; list my tears on your scroll — are they not in your record? NIV

You have taken account of my wanderings; Put my tears in your bottle. Are they not in your book? NASB

Write down my poem of sadness. List my tears on your scroll. Aren’t you making a record of them? NIRV

It sure is hard to comprehend God collecting every single tear, but he does! He notices and records each tear and each lament and places them in His bottle.

Actually “tear bottles” were commonly used during Ancient Roman times, with mourners filling glass bottles with their tears, and placing them in tombs as a symbol of their respect for the deceased. It was also used to show remorse, guilt, love and grief.

Women cried during the procession, and the more tears collected in tear bottles meant the deceased was more important. The bottles used during the Roman era were lavishly decorated and measured up to four inches in height. Tear bottles were designed with special seals, which allowed the tears to evaporate. By the time that the tears were assumed to have evaporated, the mourning period was considered over.

So it makes me wonder…Is it just one big bottle with all our tears mingled together?

The Psalm does refer to God’s “bottle” in the singular. This is so cool to me! If He has collected every tear in that bottle, then I would venture to say that mingled with our own tears are the tears of Jesus!

We know from the passage in John 11 that “Jesus wept.” John 11:35 NIV

Jesus wept when He learned of the death of Lazarus. When the people saw Him weeping, they said, “See how he loved him!” John 11:36 NIV

But I am not so sure that Jesus was weeping because Lazarus was dead…Why? Because He knew He was going to raise Lazarus from the dead.

Rather, I think Jesus wept because of the compassion He felt for his people so much so that He wept with them in their sorrow. It is us that He loved so much that it brought Him to tears.

His empathy shows how much He loves and cares for humanity as we weep over our own tragedies and losses.

This certainly brings comfort to me…especially in this Christmas season as I remember the  loss of my very dear mother 4 years ago… wishing to spend just one more Christmas with her…one more day with her… knowing however that she is rejoicing in heaven today.

If you weep today…if you are shedding some tears this Christmas… remember that God is collecting your tears in His bottle, and mixing them with the tears of our dear Savior.

He is our ultimate healer and comforter! Trust Him today because He understands and will give you peace this Christmas…peace that surpasses all understanding! God doesn’t just give us hope…He is our hope…cling closely to Him my dear friend…He will not disappoint.

He heals the broken hearts and binds up their sorrows. Psalm 147:3 AB

Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:7 NLT

Reflection Points:

1)      Is this Christmas season a season of hurt…a season of pain…a season of heartbreak…a season of grief?

2)      Are you shedding tears because of a tragedy or loss?

3)      How can you find comfort and healing in a season that is supposed to be full of joy…full of happiness…full of hope?

Action Points:

1)      Your tears have not gone unnoticed. God sees and knows all the tears you have shed! He notices and records each tear and each lament and places them in His bottle.

2)      Find comfort and healing in the knowledge that God understands and will give you peace and strength to get through your loss.

 

 

 

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