When I was really young, about 7 years old, I was at a school picnic. The day was beautiful and everything seemed so happy around me and the air was clean and fresh and the weather was pristine and then suddenly the day turned on me. My “friend” decided to not be my friend anymore. To this day, I don’t know why except that at that age, girls and kids in general can be really cruel and mean and this was that type of day. She just announced that she wasn’t going to be my friend anymore and then my other friend decided that she would “follow” her instead of me because everyone has to pick sides you know at that age. And then suddenly the innocent, fun game of running around on the grass, pulling bits of grass and throwing it at each other got really mean and they started throwing it in my hair and trying to pull my hair at the same time, or throwing it down my shirt and humiliating me. It was one of those nightmare days that a 7 year old remembers for the rest of her life - or at least until she is my age. I felt so utterly alone and depleted. I felt like an outcast; like life would never again be the same for me.
Hurt and raw and so full of sadness for the day, I trudged home wearily, feeling totally defeated. The day wasn’t beautiful anymore. In fact, it was cruel. I cried, hot tears welling up inside of me and spilling down my cheeks. I talked to God and sobbed some more.
Suddenly, in the midst of the sobs came a song. A song my Mom and sister used to sing as we traveled to churches. It was called “Tears are a language God understands”. More tears came; more sobbing but this time, because I knew in the very core of my being that Jesus understood. He understood my tears, he saved them in a bottle because he cared that much for me. He understood rejection. He understood the cares and pains of the world and ugliness and the meanness and the stabbing hurt that people inflict on others and he just calmed my spirit right then. Right there, I knew that it was going to be ok. Because I had a God walking beside me - sort of like a big brother and that if he cared for me, if he loved me, if he died for me, it would be ok. I could go through life rejected and scorned and unloved because he didn’t reject me. He didn’t scorn me and he definitely loved me enough to die for me.
And today, again, I found myself crying. I didn’t even know what to say to Jesus. So much to be said but not enough words to articulate it. Not enough ways to describe what my spirit is going through at times. I just cried and in a little spot of my spirit, I said a tiny prayer - not even audibly I don’t think. “Help” is all I said. And then I remembered again that beautiful little, powerful song that I remembered when I was little. Tears are a language that He understands. So true.
Maybe we don’t have the words to voice what is going on. Maybe the pain is too deep, too raw even to put into words, even to face that it is happening in your life right now. Maybe it seems too hopeless and you seem utterly helpless in your situation. Maybe, just maybe you see no way out - you are stuck in a really sad corner of your world with no solution, or your loved one is, and you just don’t know what to do. I want to tell you that Jesus understands your pain. He understands the deepest parts of your heart. He understands everything about you and he understands what will get you unstuck and what will rescue you and what will bring that joy back in your life.
I don’t mean the “hahaha” laughter, I don’t mean the fleeting happiness - I mean the real, tangible gut filling joy even in the midst of really really hard moments in your life. They are there. I have felt them myself and even today reached up to grab it for my own spirit.
If He is there, if He understands, if He is walking beside me and behind me and ahead of me - I am ok. I really am ok.
And so will you be.