Jesus Wept, So Why Can’t We?

“Jesus wept.”

The shortest passage in the bible, John 11:35.

Jesus wept because he heard of the death of Lazarus, a man he knew and loved, a friend who was like family.

Jesus wept out of love and grief, not out of doubt.

Jesus wept because it is the human response to loss and sadness.

Jesus wept because it is what anyone with a heart does when that heart is damaged or broken by news that is not welcome.

Jesus wept but the world didn’t stop. No one judged him. No one left him.

Jesus wept and no one questioned if he was fit to lead or fit to serve.

Jesus wept in front of his followers, in a public place for all to see, and no one turned away, no one tried to hide him, no one tried to quiet him.

Jesus wept without shame or embarrassment because weeping is as much a part of human life as laughter.

Jesus wept because tears are prayers of thanksgiving in the depths of sorrow. Each tear is praise for a life lived that now is gone, gratitude for a gift given that is no more but we loved while we had it; a gift so great that the absence of it pains us to our very core.

Jesus wept because we celebrate life not only with smiles and joy but also with heartbreak and sorrow.

Jesus wept because he loved and to love is to risk it all for the sake of the other. To love is to know your heart will swell and break because that’s how God created each and every one of us.

Jesus wept because the pain of love is as rewarding and important as the elation of ecstasy.

Jesus wept for himself and his friends but not out of selfishness or doubt. We can mourn loss in the same moment we have deep and abiding faith that death doesn’t have the last word.

Jesus wept because faith isn’t about 24/7 smiles and praise but about steadfastness in the face of loss and pain.

Jesus wept because he could, in a full embrace of his humanity and capacity for life, love, suffering, loss, joy, elation, friendship.

Jesus wept because he should, because that’s what we do when someone we love leaves us, sometimes even when we know it’s temporary.

Jesus wept, showing us yet another stone in the path that paves the way of life, the way of the cross, the way of faith, the way that is discipleship and dedication to following him.

Jesus wept, so why can’t we? Why don’t we? Are we less human? Do we feel love and loss any less? Do we think ourselves better or stronger than the almighty? Are we so ashamed and embarrassed by our tears whereas God himself cried openly and with abandon?

Jesus wept. And so do we, can we, should we.

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