I had a conversation yesterday that kind of impacted me so I wanted to tell you about it. I was driving to our friend’s funeral along with another friend B whom I’ve only started getting to know better recently. B also used to be a teacher and she has a very similar personality to me (at least we both have the same MBTI and Enneagram types).
We started off talking about funerals and how we feel about them. Neither of us are scared of sad emotions and we both cry quite a lot and have a lot of empathy for others. Sometimes that means that we get emotional at funerals even if we don’t know the deceased that well because we empathise with family members who are upset.
I mentioned that I sometimes feel like I cry too much and she told me a story. She said that her mum had once said to her mum (B’s gran) that she cried too much. B’s gran told her that she didn’t cry too much; she had the ‘gift of tears’. I think that’s a kind of beautiful way to look at it. Not everyone finds it easy to express their emotions I suppose.
There are some people I know who seem to struggle with emotions. It seems as if they don’t know how to process the more difficult ones or what to do with them. They also find it difficult to watch others who are emotional and it can seem like they think expressing emotion is a weakness. I don’t know if that’s what they really think but it can come across like that. Sometimes the only emotion that you really see them express is anger.
As a child and a teenager I rarely cried; but after I got married and had kids I seemed to become a lot more tuned in with the sad emotions or maybe I was just more empathetic? These days I cry at all sorts of stuff – movies (happy or sad), adverts, the news and books. Sometimes my family laugh at me when I cry at movies. I cry a lot with song lyrics or when people share their stories, like when people share testimonies in church that often gets me.
The funeral service yesterday was very emotional. All four of our friend’s sons and his wife and his brother and other friends and family shared about the impact he had had on their lives. They spoke about the kind of man he was and what he had taught them. It made me wish that I had had more time to get to know him. One of his sons had even written a beautiful song for his dad. It certainly got my ‘gift of tears’ flowing.
When I first went to the docs earlier this year about depression I was crying so much that it was interfering with my life – I don’t think that was healthy – but sometimes a good cry does make you feel better. It releases oxytocin after all so it’s bound to help. I think I’m doing a lot better now and I’m crying a lot less but I’m not afraid to cry. Sometimes I think the right thing to do is to let those emotions out.
How do you feel about crying? Does it bother you when other people get emotional? Do you have the gift of tears?
It’s the middle of the night here in the UK but I can’t sleep. I’m sitting here drinking camomile tea and tossing up between ironing or ordering food shopping 😝. I don’t really want to do either of those things so instead I’m writing this post.
Don’t worry. I haven’t forgotten how to talk to God. I talk to Him a lot. I share my feelings with Him all the time and I tell Him even the things that no one else knows – I mean why not? He knows anyway.
My difficulty is that once again we have a friend who has cancer. The doctors can do no more. They’re using words like ‘palliative care’ again. We’ve been here before. More than once. Each time my friends have been asking God for a miracle. Each time I’ve prayed for that with them. I know God heals (I’ve seen this before too). I believe He wants to heal. I’ve expected God to heal. So far (if I’m remembering correctly) only one out of many friends and family members has been healed from cancer.
So how do I pray? Am I doing something wrong? I remember a few years ago teaching on this very subject in church. It was a difficult time. We had not long since lost a young friend to cancer. Many of us were struggling with continuing to ask God to heal. I’d go back and reread that sermon now but I lost it when my hard drive packed in so I don’t know if there’s anything that God was saying to me back then that would have helped me now. Probably. I remember that in essence I felt that I shouldn’t stop asking.
It gets harder to keep asking though. I mean I still do. I still know God can. I just don’t get why so often it doesn’t happen. I know God isn’t a genie in a bottle but He is God and He tells us He’s willing to heal and I know He’s able to heal so what am I missing?
I guess I’ve heard most of the answers to my question already too. I’d be surprised if you can give me an answer I haven’t heard before (feel free to try though). I’m just putting this out there because it’s on my mind tonight. Someone gave a word this morning about keys at church (related to something different) and I feel like there’s a key somewhere to be discovered where healing is concerned. I’d love to know where it is. I’m sure I’ll keep looking because it feels like I need to find it.
I came across this picture the other day on Facebook and it kinda sums up my experience. It’s certainly been true for me that loss is not a straightforward step by step process to work through – I’ve been all over the place. However, that’s not really what I wanted to talk about.
A couple of things yesterday spoke to me about reading scripture to help us with different situations and emotions. I know – this is not new and it’s certainly not rocket science but maybe it was the reminder I needed? I’m kinda assuming God wanted me to think about it at least since I pretty much got the same message from three different sources.
First my devotional was talking about reading scripture often to allow it to penetrate our hearts and minds and reminding me that there is a scripture for everything we face. I think I’ll look up some for the various stages of grief and use them if I’m struggling with that area.
Next I read the Lion Bites from GPC which was talking about God’s voice and speaking scripture. Here is the bit that stuck out to me.
As you declare God’s word, His powerful force invades and causes all things to come into alignment with Him and His rule. Take courage today that you are called and empowered to speak life and love into people and atmospheres and see real, tangible change.
Then I went to visit my lovely mentor who brought up the song ‘I can only imagine’ – a young friend of hers has just died from cancer and she was talking about how the song was written in a time of loss. She was saying that even in those most difficult times God still has plans that are bigger than we can imagine. She was telling me to dream big. Then she too was talking about Bible promises that we can lean on to get us through.
Now to him who by the power at work within us is able to accomplish abundantly far more than all we can ask or imagine. Eph 3:20
If I had time right now I’d come up with that list of Scriptures and put them here but I have a big birthday party to get organised for my Dad this weekend. If you have any thoughts about good verses for me let me know. I’ll leave just one here that’s been helpful for me recently.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take. Prov 3:5-6