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Tears, Not Mine - A Lament on an Ordinary Day

Posted by Lindsey Smallwood on


"A voice is heard in Ramah, mourning and great weeping, Rachel weeping for her children and refusing to be comforted, because they are no more."
Jeremiah 31:15 NIV)

I wake up this morning to tears, not mine.
Someone ate the last cherry Pop-Tart
    and disappointment is streaming down his face.
Not the best way for this day to start,
    but for me, a too-familiar place.

I see, in my news feed, tears, not mine.
Kids dying where they go to dance
    and mothers’ lives ended on a Wal-Mart floor.
It seems now every place there’s a chance
    for violence to come through the front door.

I hear on the telephone tears, not mine.
Her husband broke his vows
    and he won’t be coming home.
Through her sobs she allows
    truth: there are things worse than being alone.

I open the Scripture to tears, not mine.
Rachel is weeping for her children,
    her longed-for babes are no more.
Here finally, my own tears begin,
    lament that comes deep from my core.

I sing to the quiet through tears, now mine.
A question on days mundane and tragic,
    an ancient aching song.
It’s grief and hope for some Holy magic:
    How long, O Lord, how long?


Lindsey Smallwood loves to communicate truth through stories, whether by blogging, making up tales at bedtime, or preaching and teaching to churches and groups. She is married to Chris, a SJSU Physics professor, and they have three young sons.


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