Rejoicing and Weeping Together

Weeping and Rejoicing

Thursday, February 14, 2013

4:59 AM

Romans 12:15 - "Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep."


A few days ago my wife's grandfather passed away.  He was a good man, one who was loved and who was full of love.  He is a man that will be missed because it is hard to temporarily be without someone you love.  I however believe that for those who are followers of Jesus Christ that we will see him again, in a much better place than where we are now.  Thinking about this made it easier.  It was easier because we have hope that one day there will be a reunion.  It was easier because now we know that he is not suffering anymore.

But even though it was easier, it was still hard, and many tears were still shed.  As I stood at the funeral home before the service I was reminded of Paul's words to the church, "rejoice with those who rejoice and weep with those who weep."  We have done our share of both over the last couple of weeks.  We have wept certainly over his passing, but we have also rejoiced over the birth of a new baby.  There has been both weeping and rejoicing in our home, and at every turn, there have been people who have lived out Romans 12:15.

There have been people who have rejoiced with us and there have been people who have wept with us.  I'm thankful for that.    One of the most difficult things about the passing of someone  you love is that they aren't there to weep and rejoice with you in the different times of life.  We miss their presence yes, but we miss having them to talk to, to pray with and to weep with in the hard times.  We also miss having them to celebrate with in the good times.  With the birth of all 3 of our boys I couldn't help but look back and remember our loved ones who have passed away.  What would they say about our boys, how would they rejoice with us.  Because I know they would, they would weep as we wept and they would rejoice as we rejoiced. 

There is something within all of our lives that desires that.  We want and we long for people who will weep as we do, and people who will rejoice as we do.  You see that in the Bible.  When a death occurred many times wealthy people hired mourners to come in and weep with them.  And when there was reason to celebrate the whole town was invited to the celebration, and it turned into a banquet of rejoicing.  We crave having people to rejoice and weep with us.  But that shouldn't surprise us, after all we were created for community.  We aren't created to live life alone, we are created to live it in community, with our families, our friends, our church family, and most importantly our God.

God Himself created community when He created us.  He didn't create us because He needed us or because He was lonely and desired to have relationships.  God already had relationship.  He already had community.  He had it within Himself, within the Trinity.  As the song says, "God in 3 persons, blessed Trinity."  God had relationship within Himself, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit all in perfect harmony, in perfect relationship.  So God didn't create us because He needed relationship but He did create us out of love.  And He created us in His image, which means that we too have a desire for community.  God has that within Himself.  Perfect communion, perfect relationship.  We don't have that here as we live in this world but we do desire it, we do want it.

We were created for community and we desire that community.  We want relationships, we want people to weep with us and to rejoice with us.  We were created for it, and in His grace the one who created us gives us that community with the people He blesses our lives with.  He also fills that need with Himself.  He is the one who perfectly rejoices with us and who perfectly weeps with us.  He is the one who is described in the Bible, "as the friend who sticks closer than a brother."  He makes it possible for us to have relationship, and the greatest relationship that we have is with Him.  In His grace and love, He meets our needs. 

So rejoice in this life that you have been given.  Celebrate it, weep with those who are hurting and rejoice with those who are celebrating.  Be thankful for the ones who through God's grace do that with you.  Remember to be thankful for the grace of God that makes those relationships possible and more than anything revel in the relationship that you have with Jesus Christ, the creator of community.