SERIES: Praying the Psalms

TEXT: Psalm 126:1-6

MESSAGE: “Praying Through Our Tears and Disappointment”

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“There are three kinds of tears: reflexive (clears out irritants), continuous (keeps eyes lubricated), and emotional (responding to joy and sadness). Did you know that humans are the only animals who can do the third one? This fact has led many scientists to ask why?” – Beth Levine (Huffington Post: 5 Reasons Crying Is Actually Good For You)

  • “Answering God” Eugene Peterson says…“…we will not be looking here primarily for ideas about God, or for direction in moral conduct. We will expect, rather, to find the experience of being human before God exposed and sharpened. Prayer is language used in personal relation to God.”

“Try to let go of outmoded, untrue, conceptions about crying. It is good to cry, it is healthy to cry, and that’s true for all sexes…” Dr. Orloff (Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at UCLA)

  • And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.” Ezekiel 36:26

Three truths we must embrace when praying our tears…

(1. Tears will come 2. Tears have purpose 3. Tears produce joy)

  • Tears will come (v.1-4)

“When the Lord restored the fortunes of Zion, we were like those who dream. Then our mouth was filled with laughter, and our tongue with shouts of joy; then they said among the nations, “The Lord has done great things for them.” The Lord has done great things for us; we are glad. Restore our fortunes, O Lord, like streams in the Negeb!”

2. Tears have purpose (v. 5)

“Those who sow in tears shall reap with shouts of joy!”

3. Tears produce joy (v. 6)

“He who goes out weeping, bearing the seed for sowing, shall come home with shouts of joy, bringing his sheaves with him.”

“Occasionally, weep deeply over the life you hoped would be. Grieve the losses. Then wash your face. Trust God. And embrace the life you have.”   – John Piper

TAKEAWAYS: Look for this as you pray…

  1. See that it’s safe
  2. See Jesus weeping
  3. See the danger of self pity
  4. See that joy is coming

“The end of prayer is praise. The Psalms show praise as the end of prayer…the goal at which all the psalm-prayers arrive after their long travels through the unmapped back countries of pain, doubt, and trouble, with only occasional vistas of the sunlit lands, along the way.”                     – Eugene Peterson

     5.See that it’s not in vain