“When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come along with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in spirit and troubled. ‘Where have you laid him?’ he asked. ‘Come and see, Lord,’ they replied. Jesus wept.” John 11:33-35
From a Daughter’s Perspective: Do You Know What Your Love Does?
Mom and dad, you will never know the power of your love.
Today, when I got home from school, I dropped my backpack and wept. The night before, I knelt on my bed to pray, and I cried to God for two hours. I asked Him to speak, hoping maybe He would be able to explain my sadness. I heard nothing.
I’m a 20-year-old college student living in a townhome 30 minutes away from my parents. When I’m overcome with any emotion, the first thing I do is call my mom. She shares them with me, the happy moments and the not-so-happy moments. I called her today, a weeping wreck. And because my dad happened to be five minutes away from my house, he came to save me, my knight in a shining GMC Envoy. I talked to him through sobs and sniffles:
“Dad, I don’t know what’s wrong. All I know is that I can’t stop crying. And I can’t hear God. And I don’t feel Him close to me.”
Noticing that I had blown through the sopping tissue in my hand, he pulled a white silk handkerchief from the pocket of the driver’s side door.
“Where in the world did you get this?” I asked the man who is content to blow his nose with a McDonald’s napkin.
Probably wishing I hadn’t asked, he responded, “Elise, it was the weirdest thing. A strange old lady came up to me the other day at my cousin’s funeral and handed it to me. She looked me dead in the eye and said, ‘Here, this is for you.’ But I wasn’t even crying. And I keep seeing it here thinking I need to throw it away, but for some reason I don’t.”
Dad, I believe with all my heart that God made you keep that handkerchief for me. See, He made it easy for you to love me that day, and He equipped you with everything you would need to comfort me. He had a forethought: that His daughter would be sad on some dreadful Monday, and she would need to know that Jesus is close.
Through the love of my father, I have learned so much about my Abba and my Jesus. I grew up shielded by love and the security it provides. In my yellow gingerbread home, I was free to imagine and dream. I never second-guessed the love of my father. I don’t know where I would be without the prayers of my parents.
Today, my father taught me that Jesus is close to the brokenhearted (Psalm 34:18). Jesus wept with me, just like He wept with Mary and Martha when their brother died. He did not cry because Lazarus’ life was irretrievable: He knew Lazarus would live again. He cried because His daughters’ hearts were broken, and He could not bear to see them sad. Jesus feels everything we feel. When we are “brought down to the dust; our bodies [clinging] to the ground” (Psalm 44:25), Jesus doesn’t just snap His fingers and make everything better again. He does something that speaks much more to His character. He meets us in the dirt, gives up His place on high to be with the lowly, the broken-spirited. More than that, He gives us hope, “And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit…” (Romans 5:5).
Mom, thank you for always answering.
Dad, thank you for following the lead of the Holy Spirit.
Your love makes me strong.
Blessings and Love,
- Pray to understand the love of the Father. This is a love that is always present, that is the ultimate expression of empathy. And mommas, know that the best thing you can do for your children is to show them this love.
Next time your children are sad, remind them that Jesus sees them in their sadness and that His heart breaks for them. There is a purpose, even for sadness, and that is to draw us closer to God and closer to our loved ones. Make your children a warm cup of tea, watch their favorite show with them, and know that, in these times, God will speak through your love more than your words.