IT WAS THE late seventies, and I was sitting with Gordon Cosby, cofounder and pastor of the Church of the Saviour, a small, vibrant, ecumenical congregation in the inner city of Washington, D.C. We were having lunch … and reflecting on the challenges of preaching within in the contemporary urban context. Almost forty years of servant ministry had given my lunch companion a profound pastoral wisdom. When I asked him whether he had anything to say to me about sharing the gospel on the suffering continent of Africa, he responded, “Always remember that each person you see … sits next to his or her own pool of tears.” …
Each of us does sit next to a pool of tears. As you read my words, you are sitting beside your pool; and as I write these words, I am seated next to mine. Our pools are different. Some are deeper; some are muddier. Some have been caused by what has been done to us; some are the result of our own doing. These pools remind us of the grief and losses that we have experienced through our lives. It might have been the death of a loved one, the pain of divorce, abuse as a child, the unmet longing for a partner, the loss of a job, or a rejection by a close friend. There are many different kinds of pools – the list goes on and on.
But tears don’t have to end in sadness and pain. As different as our pools of tears may be, they can lead us into a new space of change and growth. If we allow our tears to tell their stories, they can become the means by which our lives are transformed.
- Trevor Hudson
Hope Beyond Your Tears
From pages 13-15 of Hope Beyond Your Tears: Experiencing Christ’s Healing Love by Trevor Hudson. Foreword by Dallas Willard. Copyright © 2012 by Trevor Hudson. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. http://bookstore.upperroom.org/ Learn more about or purchase this book.
Describe a time when your tears have been transformed to a space of change and growth. Share your thoughts.
Upon you I have leaned from my birth; it was you who took me from my mother’s womb. My praise is continually of you.
Psalm 71:6, NRSV
This Week: pray for people seeking employment. Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section below.
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This week we remember Prudence Crandall (January 30).
(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
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