The Heart of the Father in Our Times of Sorrow
Jesus wept, for He loves us so.
RUSTY BURNS – Jesus wept. His beloved friend Lazarus had died.
Jesus wept. Shortest verse in the Bible. (John 11:35) He grieved the same way we grieve.
Upon arriving at the tomb the Son of God’s first reaction was not, “Stand back, I’ve got this covered.” No. His first response was to weep.
Did Jesus know Lazarus was to be raised from the dead? Or was it only after He wept that the Father said to raise him? Was it the deep sorrow His Son felt that moved the Father to bring Lazarus back to the living?
What we know is that Jesus only did what He saw the Father doing (John 5:19) and that He and the Father are One (John 10:30). And He is our Father too. The heart of God is indeed moved by our hearts. Our hopes, our dreams, our despairs, our sorrows.
And He weeps when we weep.
This life gives us many reasons and opportunities to feel deep sorrow. This is a fallen world.
But we can take consolation in this: we have hope in the eternal, because the love of the Father was so strong that He allowed Jesus to suffer deeply. Indeed the Father’s own heart was broken as Jesus was humiliated, beaten and hung to die. The Son being perfect would be the fitting sacrifice (Hebrews 10:14) — the Only One worthy to defeat death. And now as we trust in Him death is no longer the final word. (1 Cor 15:55)
Indeed God the Father wept when Jesus died on the cross. The sun darkened and the earth shook. (Matthew 27: 51) There are times when like Lazarus’ sisters we cry, “Pease don’t take my loved one, Father!” Yet sometimes He does and our world goes dark; indeed, it quakes.
But there is comfort in understanding that God truly knows what we are feeling and going through in those moments. This is what separates Him from other gods; for He cares for us and has made a way. And there is hope. Even though it may not feel like it at the time, and even though we may not have our loved one raised from the dead in four days, there is indeed resurrection. (1 Cor 15:42) This is the truth that we know and must cling to: that we will see our loved ones in the Lord again.
Eternity with Him is our promise if we believe in Him and His sacrifice for our sakes.
Before He went to the Cross, Jesus’ fear was so great, He perspired blood. (Luke 22:44) He had felt the pain of loss, the pain He knew we would experience in this life. He suffered because He wanted us to have assurance that there was hope on the other side of eternity.
For the heart of the Father in our times of sorrow is filled with empathy, comfort, hope and promise. For He loves us so.
In honor of my friend Michael O’Donnell. A man with the heart of a pastor, and voice of a soothing angel, who loved God, his wife Kathleen, his sons and family, and his friends — a designation I was blessed to be called. This fall, he left us to join the Lord. I love you Mikey! See you at the Banquet.