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Today has been a wonderful day in Church. Amazing to gather together and to collectively choose to worship God - for who He is and who He will always be. We sang and proclaimed truth. We were led magnificently. Simon spoke with grace and clarity about "How to cope when bad things happen". There were tears of course as we worshipped, and as we reflected on Annie's life and death.
I was reminded of PJ Smyth's blog . He has recently been diagnosed with cancer, and he writes about
"Learning to cry well" - it's a wonderful perspective on crying - and crying publicly. I found it both challenging and humbling. Hope you enjoy it too (and pass the tissues please) x


"A fair few tears flow daily in the Smyth home at the moment, especially Ashleigh’s and mine. They can break out at almost anytime prompted by gratitude to the kindness and close presence of Jesus, or thankfulness to the kind words and actions of friends, or at news of the suffering of others that is already seeming to break our hearts in a fresh way, or because of tiredness and fear of the unknown. We are trying to cry well and Ps 126 is a great mentor:
Those who sow in tears shall reap with songs of joy. He who goes out weeping, carrying seed to sow, will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with him (Ps 126v4-6).
Tears are seed
Tears are not arbitrary or worthless. They are precious seed that if aimed right, can win a harvest of great joy. If a farmer bottles his seed up inside then he can forget about a harvest. Or equally, if he sows indiscriminately pouring out the seed on unfertile ground, then again, harvest will not come. So, the trick is to aim our tears onto good soil…
Where should we aim our tears?Let’s learn from Jesus: During the days of Jesus’ life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with loud cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and was heard because of his reverent submission (Heb 5v7).
Jesus mingled his tears with prayer, which means he sowed his tears into God. This means we should take our honesty and pain to our Heavenly Father knowing that he is the best soil in the universe. Crying with God produces a reverence and submission to him and his perfect will. I think this beats standing at a distance in sulky silence or yelling healing scriptures at him. Let’s draw in close to him, feel his deep love and presence, be in awe of his sovereignty and glory through the ages, and then reverently, submissively and expectantly call forth the glorious kingdom of God in healing and on the earth. That is truly fertile soil that will produce a lasting harvest of joy.

Also, we can discerningly sow our tears with other people. Suffering is also a communal privilege for the family of God, and we can deprive the body of that privilege if all we do is weep in splendid isolation, and then emerge in public as ‘The Tearless Wonder’ with our super-hero cape flapping in the breeze. Certainly, don’t drown others with your tears, but don’t deprive them either. We are finding that doing some crying with faith-filled and compassionate brothers and sisters is a fertile experience for all concerned. "

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