Psalm 34:17-19 (NKJV) 17 The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears, And delivers them out of all their troubles. 18 The LORD is near to those who have a broken heart, And saves such as have a contrite spirit. 19 Many are the afflictions of the righteous, But the LORD delivers him out of them all.
Babies cry…sometimes they cry a lot. In our culture young boys are encouraged not to cry. We are taught that to be a man you need to be tough, and being tough means no tears. I am not of the mindset to encourage men not to be tough, because it takes a certain amount of toughness and thick skin to cope with the challenging life events that are happening in real time…in the real world. On the other hand, there are times when the only possible healthy response to a real life experience is a broken heart and a good deal of tears.
Who do you turn to in the troubled times? Who sees your tears and broken heart? King David declared, “The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart.” When a loved one receives a bad report from the doctor. When there is an unexpected financial crisis in the family. When a friend’s daughter runs away from home. When you are given a ticket for speeding. In our times of trouble…the Lord is near.
It is a great encouragement, just to know that the Lord is near. That in our stress He is the anchor that holds. However, God’s involvement with us extends beyond mere proximity. David encourages us with the idea that although we may suffer through afflictions, the Lord delivers us “out of them all!” Now that is quite the promise! I think it is safe to say that “God is with us, God is for us, God is our ultimate provision. So, let us cry out knowing that He will dry our tears.
Author's Note: I am not a highly emotional person, but even I feel moved to tears by the harsh realities of this world. This last September I went on a Mission's trip to Swaziland. I saw things, particularly issues that dealt with children, that broke my heart. I shed many tears. I get emotional just thinking about it. These are just a few among the many things that I bring to the Lord in prayer...and He hears me...He is close. RJ