Sometimes God gifts a person with an ability to speak into our lives and hearts in a way that changes the way we see the world. When done in love of God and faithfulness to the Gospel of Jesus, it is a gift that can work to bring you a newness of life, heart and hope. One person who speaks into my life is Dr. Tim Keller, the pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City. His gift of preaching and writing continue to minister to my family on a daily basis as we listen to his old sermons on-line or on the i-Pod and as we read his books. He is a great communicator of truth, making it simple enough to understand and deep enough to reach your very soul (though only through the power of the Holy Spirit).
"Praying Our Tears" is a sermon I have listened to several times. I heard it before Jairus died and I have returned to it since. If you have 35 minutes to listen (I usually have sermons on either while working on the house or driving in the van...ah, multitasking...) it would be well worth your effort. It's a free down load, as are many from the church's website. Find them all HERE. Actually I highly recommend any of Keller's work. He's solid and real and honest and incredibly relate-able.
The sermon speaks to me on many levels. Some of them include:
**Sorrows will come in my life. They are inevitable. Especially if I am trying to follow hard after Jesus.
**Suffering is not in my life because of my actions or my sin. Jesus already paid for all my sin, its not my place to suffer for it..
**God wants me to invest my tears, not hide them. To let Him use them for His purposes. To sow them like seeds in a field. He promises the harvest of those seeds is JOY. (Hello reason for this blog)
**God understands my suffering and pain. Jesus experienced the deepest most utter suffering imaginable when he died on the cross and the Father turned away from Him as Jesus bore the sin of the world on Himself.
**I don't have to be polished in my prayers. I have to be honest, even if what I cry out is not theologically correct (meaning it doesn't have truth about who God is but is instead raw and how I am feeling in my rawness).
So please take the time to listen to Tim Keller preaching from the Psalms "Praying our Tears"