January 12, 2019

Tears Are Okay

John 11:33-36

Jesus wept.

—  John 11:35

I had just come from the hospice facility where I had visited a member of our congregation. He was ready to die and make heaven his home. I knew that when he passed away, I would miss him and our conversations together.

What I didn’t expect that day was to get a call from a young couple asking if I could meet with them at the hospital. The son they had been expecting would not be coming home with them. Complications with the pregnancy had led to a still birth, and the young parents were in shock and grieving. The nurses in the hallway were grieving too. There were also three little girls at home waiting to welcome their little brother. They needed to be told that he wasn’t coming home.

“Reed was perfect in every way. He has gone to be with Jesus now. We know that our heavenly Father will use this for good. Even though this isn’t what we expected or what we wanted for our family, he is still good, and Reed’s legacy will be a testament to his goodness.” These words from the parents reminded me of the Scripture passage for today, showing that Jesus too had to deal with the death of people he loved. How comforting it is to know that just as Jesus wept over his friend Lazarus, he also weeps with us in our grief.

Dear Lord, thank you for showing us that tears are okay. Remind us that you are with us in our grief and that you are our comforter. Please heal our hurts and bring goodness into our lives, that we may share it with others. Amen.

About the author — Beth Fellinger

Beth Fellinger is the pastor of Destination Church in St. Thomas, Ontario. She and her husband have been involved in ministry in large urban centers and small rural communities. Beth has served in three church plants and a church rebirth as well as in established churches. She loves her children, their spouses, and grandchildren. She is a cancer survivor twice over and celebrates life every day. She believes strongly in the local church and what a church committed to Christ, missions, and its community can accomplish. She has an enthusiastic vision of how the church can reach out and share the good news of Jesus with others.


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