About a year ago God began to stir a Lesson plan in me. Our church has Sunday School classes that run in 6 week sessions and it has been about 2 years since I took on a class. He gave the idea as I was driving to work one morning and I knew it would be done….. someday. I tried to get it to fall into place for a year…. and I only got the “outline” of what it would be and never the “lessons” to go with it.
Then about a month ago one of our Pastors was filling in for a Sunday School teacher who was on a mission trip ….and basically called me out…. in his sneaky little way… that I should do a session coming up! Ok God…. I heard you loud and clear…. NOW was the time to do the series. I contacted him and told him I would do this or next session… which ever he needed me to do…. and bam…. I am on the schedule for 2 weeks from now!
The subject….. T. E. A. R. S.
Yes…. just like that….. T. E. A. R. S.
Each week we are going through what causes Tears…. by letter. But the first lesson…. THIS lesson… is a foundation lesson.
Tears….. What are Tears?
Websters defines a tear as:
1. a drop of clear Saline fluid secreted by the Lacrimal gland and diffused between the eye and the eyelids to moisten the parts and facilitate their motiton.
b. (plural) a Secretion of profuse tears that overflow the eyelids and dampen the face.
2. a transparent drop of fluid
3. (plural) an act of weeping or grieving
Very Sterile…. mechanical definition … non…. emotional.
Medically… we know that tears also have an important function to not only keep our eyes moist so they move properly and smoothly and keep them healthy…. but when we get a foreign object, an irritant in our eye…. the tears help to just wash them away! Not only is it “water” but it is “salt” water…! Saline! Saline… is used to wash out wounds! Saline…. is a cleansing agent as well as a healing agent! How cool is that … that God would make a tear… out of Saline…. because another benefit from tears…. or crying…. is that it can stimulate the production of endorphins, which is our body’s natural pain killer and “feel-good” hormones! In other words… It can “cleanse” ….our hearts! That’s why a good cry IS sometimes… just what the Dr. ordered !
In Psalms 56:8 NLT says:
You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book.
I absolutely LOVED that scripture the moment I first read it. It takes on a whole new meaning of how tender and attentive God is to us!
I mean if we thought Matthew 10:29-31 that says …. What is the price of two sparrows—one copper coin? But not a single sparrow can fall to the ground without your Father knowing it. And the very hairs on your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows….. then how AWESOME is it to know that God… our Father God…. not only sees … but keeps track of ALL my sorrows….and collects ALL my tears…. and records EACH ONE in His book!!
How absolutely BEAUTIFUL!
I read an article on Tear bottles….History shows large amounts of small bottles were discovered in tombs which were believed they were part of the mourning ritual. As a sign of honor…. mourners would shed tears in a bottle to leave in the tombs of the more nobel people and Egyptian Pharaohs tombs. Some believe “professional mourners” were paid to fill up bottles to create a bigger impact at the funerals.
In more modern times….soldiers going off to war would leave their wives or new brides with a tear bottle…..in hopes that the bottles would be full when they returned…. which would signifying their wives devotion. Many …. lives however…..were lost. They also said that on the anniversary of the first year of their loved one’s death, the widows would go to the grave and sprinkle those tears on the grave to signify the end of the first year of mourning. This tradition of the tear bottle for mourning seemed to be both helpful for remembering their lost loved one and also as a way of healing!
The other Scripture that lead to this lesson is found in Revelation 21:4
He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever!
This tells me … that not only does God see … and record… and keep every tear we have shed on Earth… but when we get to Heaven… He will be up close and personal to each of us.
Can’t you see Him? Like a Mother or a Father…. taking their child’s face in their hands…. and with their thumbs…. they gently and tenderly wipe each tear from their eyes!
THAT is the God I serve. He LOVES me…. He loves YOU!!! He is a loving, gentle God that we can call …. Father….. Abba….Daddy! It is THAT God …. that will wipe away EVERY tear from our eyes and their will be NO MORE death…. sorrow…. crying… or pain! FOREVER!
How many tear bottles do I have in Heaven I wonder?
In 53 years… I have definitely filled my share….. and I am most certain…. my collection is not complete.
But…. what I do know… is this… Not one…. no… NOT ONE…. has slipped past my Daddy God. How do I know… ?
Psalms 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.
…and another confirmation of how much He Loves and Cares about us…..
1 peter 5:7 AMP
casting all your cares [all your anxieties, all your worries, and all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares about you [with deepest affection, and watches over you very carefully].