Safe to Cry with Jesus

7456141970_c9c7d38139_zHow many times have you held back tears while trying to be strong for someone else? If you’re like me, it may be too many to count.

Recent examples happened for me during some of the most difficult days after my husband Don’s injury in November. On a couple of different occasions it was all I could do to keep from collapsing into a pool of tears.

On dismissal day from the hospital, I was completely overwhelmed with being caregiver to someone who not only had his spine fractured in several places but who also was experiencing an adverse reaction to some medication.

When the time came to leave, I ducked into a bathroom and pleaded with God to help me hold it together. I didn’t want to cry in front of Don or my dad, who was also on hand as we left. The last thing I wanted to do was scare Don or worry him, and I didn’t want to worry my dad more than he already was. God heard my prayers and gave me the strength I needed to shake off the imminent meltdown. Thank you, Lord!

The other time I had to fight back tears was when my daughter Kristin was leaving after she’d been home helping us for a couple of days. I was worried about Don, who was experiencing some of his worst days, and also fearful of facing the situations that might unfold alone. As she left, I held my eyes as wide open as I could to try to keep the tears from falling. I later found out she was fighting tears as well and unleashed them only after she drove away. Yes, we stood strong for each other that day.

I’m so glad we don’t have to stand strong when we’re with Jesus—so glad we’re safe to cry with him. He is strength itself and wants to be our Rock, our Refuge. We can let our guards down when we’re with him and let the tears flow freely. We can let him know our deepest needs and tell him all about our fears and the weariness that threatens to overwhelm us.

Do you need to cry today? You’re safe with Jesus. Go ahead and turn to him.

“‘This is what the Lord, the God of your father David, says: I have heard your prayer and seen your tears . . .’” 2 Kings 20:5

*When have you held back tears to be strong for someone else?

*Flickr photo by KimbOlene, Creative Commons License

*The next issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter, will come out in early February. Sign-up is free and to the right!


  1. Oh how I know this feeling and yes, Jesus never reprimands or shies away from our pain. You are right, He reaches out, welcomes, and waits for us to come. There is no place like in His arms.

    I hope you are all doing better.
    Much love,

    • Oh Nancy, you said it so well — there’s no place like in His arms. So very true. And yes, we are doing better. Don got to start this semester with a modified work load and extra help. He is pushing harder and doing more than I think he should, but you know how that goes I’m sure :) Much love to you as well!

  2. I’m so sorry you’ve gone through so much lately. But I join you in praising God that we can rest in His arms and cry. After all, He sees and knows anyway! So thankful Don is progressing and you have those precious babies to hold!

    • Vonda, “rest” is my theme word for this year, and your thought about resting in God’s arms and crying shows me one more way to rest in Him. And having our precious grandbabies to hold and love has sure been a welcome joy after so many difficult weeks. A blessing beyond words!

  3. What a profound comfort that we know He has “heard our prayer and seen our tears”!!!!!!

  4. Aren’t you sometimes afraid that if you let go you won’t be able to stop? That’s why I suck it up most of the time. And if anyone has had reasons to cry during the last year, it certainly is you, my brave friend.

    • Aww, thanks, Jana. And yes, sometimes it seems our tears will never stop. It’s hard to feel so fragile, isn’t it? So thankful for our heavenly Father who strengthens us through such times.

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