Thu May 14-Tears in a Bottle

Psalm 56:8-11 (CEB)

You yourself have kept track of my misery.
    Put my tears into your bottle—
    aren’t they on your scroll already?
Then my enemies will retreat when I cry out.
    I know this because God is mine.
10     God: whose word I praise.
        The Lord: whose word I praise.
11 I trust in God; I won’t be afraid.
    What can anyone do to me?


There are seasons in our lives when sadness comes more easily than laughter and when the hurt feels much more real than the joy. There are moments when silent tears flow more readily than wordy prayers.

“You yourself…have put my tears into your bottle.” When I am hurting, this image serves as a reminder that no pain I experience escapes God’s notice. No tears that we shed fall to the ground without God seeing and noting them. They’re all recorded in the scroll of God’s love for us.

People who care about us want to know our stories. They want to know what we’ve been through, both the good and the bad, all the joys and all the sorrows. They want to know because these are the things that have made us who we are. Our experiences have shaped us.

God is no different. God wants to know us, deeply – and wants us to trust that our Creator both sees and hears. Always. God pays attention to our words and to our silences. And we can trust the Spirit to receive our hurts – whether we offer them through our words or only through our tears. Our Savior will love us through all of them.

By Joe Monahan

For Pondering & Prayer

Do your hurts tend to draw you closer to God or make you feel more distant? You may want to bookmark this passage from the Psalms for the next time you feel as though your prayers to God are not being heard.

Prayer: Gracious God, you created us in love and we know that you care about all that happens in our lives. When we feel isolated and alone, when we feel as though no one understands, remind us that you see and that you know. Remind us that our tears are captured in your bottle and written down in your scroll. Thank you for caring so deeply about the things that hurt us. Amen.

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