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I Cry for You

Amber Ginter

iBelieve Contributing Writer
Published Aug 28, 2022
I Cry for You

I firmly believe that when God places something on our hearts and minds, He does so for a reason. Even when we cannot understand it.

When I was eight years old, I remember standing beside my mom in church and singing the prelude. Shortly after we sang, however, I was startled to see my mom with tears gently streaming down her cheeks. While this didn't happen every time, it occurred enough over the decades for me to learn and understand why. 

In the years to come, I would often ask Mom why she was crying. And while I knew Jesus died for me, I also knew my mom was extra-emotional. I never knew if she was crying because she was so touched by grace or because she had lots of emotions that needed expressing at that very moment. She would often tell me she didn't know why she was crying. God laid something on her heart, mind, or soul, and that is all it took. I didn't understand it then, but I'm starting to understand it now. 

When God Lays It on Your Heart

As a high school English teacher, it has become evident that I read and write a lot. Most people would suspect that. But one thing many people, including myself, did not realize about teaching is the way God can choose to lay something upon those with whom you interact daily. 

While I suspected I would impact my students' lives, I did not predict the immense burden I would feel just four years into it. It's a blessing and a curse to feel everything so deeply.

Nothing can prepare you for reading one-hundred and five personal memoirs recounting horrific trauma and upbringings you'd never imagined. 

Nothing can prepare you for seeing over half of those students coming from broken, toxic, or divorced family homes.

Nothing can prepare you for feeling such love and concern for your students that you bring it home.

Nothing can prepare you for the tears and turmoil you shed when God gives you a name, and that person doesn't know.

Nothing can prepare you for when God lays something on your heart, and all you can do is wait for Him to move. 

The Purpose in Our Tears

While I'm only a few days into my fourth year of teaching, I can sense and recognize that God is stirring these things in me. And just as my mom wept tears in church, now here I am driving down a road sobbing. Perhaps because I desire for all the kids I teach to be saved. Perhaps because I care about them deeply beyond the four walls of a school. Perhaps for reasons only God knows. 

But the older I get, the more I realize this: I cry for them, and I can cry for you whether or not my mind can comprehend it. And that is okay.

Because I believe that when God speaks to your heart and burdens you with something to the point of tears, I have to think it means something. I have to know it matters. Even if I don't know why. Even if I do.

Jesus Wept, Too

In John 11:35, Scripture tells us that Jesus wept. And while we know He wept here because of His empathy for Lazarus' family (though He would soon raise him from the dead), we know that there were probably many times Jesus wept, and we didn't know why.

Jesus wept for Jerusalem when they denied His existence in Luke 19:41-44:

"As he approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it and said, 'If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace—but now it is hidden from your eyes. The days will come upon you when your enemies will build an embankment against you and encircle you and hem you in on every side. They will dash you to the ground, you and the children within your walls. They will not leave one stone on another, because you did not recognize the time of God’s coming to you'" (NIV).

In Matthew 19:16-30, Jesus wept for the rich man who turned away in sorrow:

"And behold, a man came up to him, saying, 'Teacher, what good deed must I do to have eternal life?'  And he said to him, “Why do you ask me about what is good? There is only one who is good. If you would enter life, keep the commandments.” He said to him, 'Which ones?' And Jesus said, “You shall not murder, You shall not commit adultery, You shall not steal, You shall not bear false witness, Honor your father and mother, and, You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” The young man said to him, 'All these I have kept. What do I still lack?' Jesus said to him, “If you would be perfect, go, sell what you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.” When the young man heard this he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions" (ESV).

Jesus also wept for the Pharisees and prostitutes alike.

Jesus weeps for you and me today.

There is a Reason

I firmly believe that when God places something on our hearts and minds, He does so for a reason. Even when we cannot understand it.

Jesus wept, and we hadn't a clue. But His Father knew and always will/does.

Like me with my mom, I didn't understand her tears. It took me decades to understand it, and I'm just starting to understand it now. 

To be honest, I cry every week: but I know how God is moving, working, and speaking to me and speaking through others. I know He is changing lives. 

The gospel is worth the tears.

The gospel is worth not understanding. 

The gospel is worth the weight of a why.

My Father in heaven knows the answer to the question, the need behind the burden, and the prayer behind the name. And just like Jesus with God, all I am to do is be faithful in obedience and open in prayer. 

He is the only one who needs to know the why. And in the meantime, I'll cry for me, and I'll cry for you. And I'll cry for them. 

Only God needs to know why.

Agape, Amber

Photo Credit: ©Getty Images/Prostock-Studio

amber ginter headshotAmber Ginter is a teacher-turned-author who loves Jesus, her husband Ben, and granola. Growing up Amber looked for faith and mental health resources and found none. Today, she offers hope for young Christians struggling with mental illness that goes beyond simply reading your Bible and praying more. Because you can love Jesus and still suffer from anxiety. You can download her top faith and mental health resources for free to help navigate books, podcasts, videos, and influencers from a faith lens perspective. Visit her website at amberginter.com.