My Garden of Tears
by John James Kirkwood
To live is to die a thousand deaths. To suffer a thousand heartbreaks. But He is here. He is with us. The God who knows our sleepless nights, who keeps our tears in a bottle has not forsaken us. The God who is present at the fall of every sparrow walks with us in our sorrow.
I can imagine a day when He’ll show us His collection of our tears. And there will be a vast barren land in front of us. And a nail-pierced hand will hand us a bottle and speak to us of it and we will open it and pour out our tears and each tear when it hits the ground will be a note and a great melody will spring forth. And our garden of tears will begin to bloom, colors and smells that we couldn’t begin to imagine, that cannot be captured even by the most vivid imagination.
And there will be different sections of our garden, and when each bottle is expended we will walk through it, and when we do, our memories will be stirred of the wounds that caused the tears. But now they only cause us to smile or to cry in a different way. This time they are tears of joy and of that serenity that only comes from understanding and contentment.
We will walk through tears of folly and we will laugh. We will stop in that corner of the garden that blooms our tears of anxiety for things that never came to be and we will shake our heads.
And through our tears of regret the wind will pick up and we will hear Psalms whisper through the trees. And finally, we will walk through that corner of the garden that is the most breathtaking, the most spectacular of all: The tears we have shed over the departed – over the death of loved ones.
And here the music will rise to a great crescendo, building with our every step, and we will begin to run with hands spread out, our fingers touching the flowers. Here will awaken a song of triumph for we will realize that we are running through a victory garden.
And suddenly we will see it, the empty tomb. And He will lead them forward. All of ours who have died in Christ will walk out of that wound singing the song of the Lamb:
O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?
He has ransomed us from the power of the grave; He has redeemed us from death: O death, He is thy plagues; O grave, He is thy destruction!
And suddenly we will notice that we are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses, each with their own tear garden, all leading to the empty tomb.
And the fragrance of our prayers will fill the garden, and our symphony of tears will rise from an orchestra of every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, will be heard to sing, “Blessing, and honor, and glory, and power, be unto him that sits upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.”