“For the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd; he will lead them to springs of living water. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.” —Revelation 7:17

Years ago when I was in the hospital, I noticed something peculiar. Even though there was so much pain in the lives of my roommates, even though I knew they were hurting, no one cried. Sometimes I would lie awake in the middle of the night, wanting so much to cry, but afraid to. I was afraid I would wake up my roommates and maybe, just maybe, they would make fun of me the next day at physical therapy. So I kept my tears to myself.

After I got out of the hospital, I learned about David, the warrior-king who cried. The pages of the Psalms are salted with this man’s tears. I learned about big, burly Peter who wept bitterly when he recognized his sin. I read about Jesus who offered prayers and petitions “with loud cries and tears.”

Learning about these people in Scripture gave me courage to cry. No longer were tears an embarrassment, a mark of weakness or shame. And I have the confidence that one day God will wipe away all my tears. How ironic that in heaven, where I will be able to once again wipe my own tears, I won’t have to.

God gives you hope, even though you find it hard to hold back the tears. The Bible says, “Those who sow in tears will reap with songs of joy.” That means that out of your grief, God will bring the reward of joy that will last forever.

Sometimes, God, it seems that pain and problems will last forever. Thank You for reminding me today that tears are only temporary. How I look forward to the day when You will personally wipe away the tears of us all.
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