The Gift of Tears
by Jennifer Ann Burnett
Feb 6, 2004
I feel a drop of warm, salty fluid run slowly down my cheek.
And I realize that I am crying once again!
“Oh Jennifer”, I chide myself, “Why are you crying this time?”
And as I think back over these last four months
That I have indeed cried many tears (but mostly tears of joy!)
And used up more Kleenex boxes in the recent past
Then I ever did as a child, despite all my coughs and colds.
For my tears now often come unbidden by any real distress or pain
When I am all alone, just thinking about what God has done
Giving me a brand new life- so glorious it takes my breath away!
I cannot help but bow my head in thanksgiving and in praise,
Releasing emotions that overflow and fill my heart,
Because He has made His Presence so very real to me,
Often whispering softly in my ear “I love you!”
And so the flow of tears begins anew.
I am seated silently there on the edge of my bed
My wife sitting across; anger clouds her usually smiling face.
And she is yelling at me, for she has had an awful day
And I, for a large part, am the very cause of it.
“I feel you are already gone, departed where, I do not know!
And I now must be the only nail to hold this family together.
For you are so different, tied up within your own new self
That you have lost touch with those who need you the most”.
I meekly nod, “You’re right” and that is all I say, for she
Has given me far more support that I could have ever asked.
She understood my pain, knew all the suffering I’ve gone through,
And witnessed my agony as I began to be remade anew.
If only I could let her know how much I feel her grief, and mine,
That I should be the source of sorrow for those who are around me!
And then without a further thought, my tears begin to flow
They speak for me- more eloquent than a thousand words.
She sees me crying now, her husband who had never cried before
So emotionally controlled, he almost seemed unreal.
And she knows how sorry I am to be in such a helpless state,
For the only choice I had was a new life or a living death.
Her anger fades now and we embrace; both of us will cry together,
For tears speak a common language that has no further use for words.
In the congregation, with both my hands raised up to You-
It is our worship time, and You and I are one.
Though clad in male attire, as it still must be for now,
I have no doubts that You see me as I really am:
Your beloved daughter, Your Jennifer, who has come to You
With tears of joy and happiness streaming down her face
She does not even try to wipe them off, for more will come
As she senses Your warm, luxurious embrace.
“Why are you crying, Dad?” my son inquires with concern.
But I cannot answer back right now with any words,
For I am lifted up within the wonders of Your love
And worship is my soul’s one response to You.
For You own my whole heart and my entire being
Because You set me free- a person once bound, in so much pain.
And I, Your obedient handmaid have now come to kneel
Before the One who makes me all I am and ever hoped to be.
For worship comes in many forms- in word and song and prayer,
But for me, I worship You with tears- they are my highest praise!
I’m at my bedside now, in prayer for all my recent friends.
Most do not know You; they have closed You out.
Yet they willingly listen as I talk about Your work in me!
For what You have done is beyond anything they could dream.
For whatever reason, the Bible is a forbidden book to them,
But You have instead made me Your “Letter of Christ”,
Written to them by the Spirit on my tender heart
Which they cannot deny, for they see You there, living in me.
And the Spirit whispers in my ear “Why do you cry, my child?”
Puzzled, I once again find tears are filling up my eyes.
And the Spirit, who searches hearts, answers His own question.
“I have put such a love and concern in your heart
For those who are lost to Me, who suffer alone and afraid,
So that you will know how very much I love them too,
And pray for them as you have never prayed before,
That they may also know the joy and peace I’ve given you”.
So I pray again with all my tears, for it hurts me at the thought
That they might pass into an eternity without their loving God.
I see myself in heaven now, after all my work on earth is done.
I am dancing with my Lord, attired in a white and flowing gown,
Shining like stars are the jewels imbedded in it,
Each represents a work of grace that God performed through me.
He introduces me before the assembled host of heaven,
Just as He honors each of His children when they arrive.
“This is my maidservant, Jennifer, in whom I am well pleased,
For she loves me with her whole heart,
And worships me with such awe and reverence
That only my choicest of saints ever get to know”.
I feel again a familiar sensation on my cheek
I touch it with my hand, and behold, It is a tear!
I stand there, baffled, before my beloved Lord
And hold out my hand to show Him what I found.
“My Master, I thought there would be no tears in heaven”.
He smiles, as He dries my face with His gentle hand,
“My daughter, these are my special ‘Tears of Joy’,
The only ones which are allowed in My Kingdom.
They were My heavenly gift to you while down on the earth,
And a perfect gift will always abide forever.”
I smile at Him, bow down and begin to cry once more,
For His gift of tears to me is far more precious than any treasure!