I just finished putting together a funeral sermon and when I went to save it…I hit delete instead.
I wanted to cry. My disappointment was great. But I realized I could put it together again and I moved on to writing this post.
I turned back to my devotional, A Guide to Prayer For All Who Walk With God, and found these words: “Tears are deemed a gift by many ancient masters of the spiritual tradition…Tears were, for the ancient church, given to some along with wisdom, knowledge, faith, healing, prophecy, and the like, for the life of the entire community (Wendy M. Wright, “Tears of a Greening Heart,” Weavings).”
Ms. Wright goes on to link tears to the word compunction, which “literally means ‘to puncture with’…To have our hearts thus ‘punctured’ is both the beginning and the dynamic of the journey.”
I instantly thought of the words to the old hymn:
1 I love thy kingdom, Lord,
the house of thine abode,
the church our blest Redeemer saved
with his own precious blood.
2 I love thy church, O God.
Her walls before thee stand,
dear as the apple of thine eye,
and graven on thy hand.
3 For her my tears shall fall;
for her my prayers ascend;
to her my cares and toils be given,
till toils and cares shall end.
I sat quietly and listened to the questions pounding, puncturing my heart: Do I weep for God’s kingdom? What do my prayers look like, sound like? Does the intensity of my hate for sin drive me to wrestle like Jesus in the Garden? How hard am I working?
Prayer Thoughts: O God. How I wish you could just tap on my heart and find willingness and openness. I’m sure I can count the layers of indifference, excuses, and busyness you must have to go through to even begin to puncture. I don’t want it to be that way. I imagine removing those layers might be painful…and I’m not into pain. But I want your Kingdom, your Spirit, your love to be my focus, aim, my life. Peel and puncture. Let tears of love fall from my heart and become a healing stream for those who thirsting for you around me. Amen.