Luke 7:37-38 37 And, behold, a woman in the city, which was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisee's house, brought an alabaster box of ointment, 38 And stood at his feet behind him weeping, and began to wash his feet with tears, and did wipe them with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed them with the ointment.
I do not know if there could ever be a more precious use of tears than those used in this text. She washed the feet of Jesus with the pearls from her heart. What humility? What love? This is a sinner who came boldly to the LORD of grace to find mercy in her time of need. Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. If a developing disciple is to grow through their sorrow, they must remember their tears are not in vain as God takes note of them and full well realizes their eternal worth.
In the arena of time, tears are a common human experience. Tears of joy for moments celebrated and tears of sorrow for a life commemorated. Tears are the portrait of a heart made known. But to shed tears alone, is sometimes more than one can bear. Have you known the experience of lonely tears, tears shed in a very quiet place of solitude? Also there are those hopeless tears, born of poverty and mounting pressure from bills unpaid. Tears often wash the face as well as the soul as the droplets of grace water the good soil of the tree planted. Are you a tree planted? Do your roots reach deep into the soil of the word of God for answers to life’s steady stream of exciting challenges?
In John chapter 11, as Jesus approached the tomb of his friend Lazarus his heart began to make itself known as HE thought of the anguish of soul for the sisters of his friend Mary and Martha. Surely he knew they were questioning his late arrival. Why did he wait so long to come? Their brother Lazarus did not have to die. Jesus loved this family. He loved them much and he knew their hearts were greatly pained. As HE approached the tomb, the bible records that “Jesus wept.” He was a man of sorrows and much acquainted with grief and there in the presence of his friends, HE wept. Those who were there took note of HIS tears and now Jesus takes note of ours.
Psalm 56:8 Thou tellest my wanderings: put thou my tears into thy bottle: are they not in thy book?
God has a tear bottle and a book to record our sorrows. He knows the path that we take and he is not surprised by the difficulty of the road we walk. No one will leave this veil of tears unscathed. We shall know that the wages of sin is death, is sorrow, is suffering, so that, throughout the ceaseless ages of eternity never again will there be a desire for sin.
King David was a man after God's own heart, but he was also a man who knew great sorrows. Listen to the songs that he sang.
Psalm 6:6 I am weary with my groaning; all the night make I my bed to swim; I water my couch with my tears.
Psalm 42:3 My tears have been my meat day and night, while they continually say unto me, Where is thy God?
Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you thought God had surely forsaken you? Your tears watered your bed and they were your daily adornment.
Job knew what it was to be forsaken by all, even his wife and friends but he knew where to look for comfort. “My friends scorn me: but mine eye poureth out tears unto God.” And also the apostle Paul in Acts 20:31 records “Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.”
Tears are a common experience to all of mankind and in our text, we discover that our tears do not go unnoticed by God, but rather, they are stored up in His tear bottle. Yes beloved, God gathers all of our tears. They are a TENDER REMEMBRANCE OF ALL OUR SUFFERINGS.
Lonely tears are certainly the worst of tears to bear. Have you known times when even though there were people around you still you find yourself having feelings of indescribable loneliness? But oh, beloved, God knows your poverty and HIS heart is full of compassion! He counts the sleepless nights! He regards the continual pain! He makes note of your daily struggles! In the midst of your many afflictions and infirmities, he counts all of your tears and stores them up in HIS bottle. Never, never, think HE has forgotten you, for you are HIS beloved bride. He will come for you at the appointed time.
Beloved, take heart for He, who is the Bread of life often was hungry. He who is the Water of life and dispensed it to others thirsted as he died. He was often wearied, yet it is HE who gives us rest. He paid tribute to the Roman king, though He was the King of kings. Christ often prayed all night long but today He hears in an instant our prayer. Jesus wept, but HE it is who will eventually dry all tears. Although HE was the Good Shepherd, He was slain as a lamb. He died, and because of HIS death we need never die.
2 Corinthians 8:9 For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich.
Because of HIS sufferings for our sins, the stars shall die, but we shall live forever. The sun shall grow old with age but we shall never perish. For we have the breath of God. We are eternal. This universe will one day be destroyed, but the sons of God shall bask in the glory of HIS presence forever.
Parents seek to raise their children the best that they know how, but too often. The children become wayward. In the midnight, their pillow is stained with tears. But remember there beside the throne of God, is a bottle of great dimension. And in this bottle, are all the tears shed for those wayward children. The grass may be growing upon your grave. The stone already having weathered many a storm before the divine response may come. But remember God hath declared: "I will be a God to thee, and to thy seed after thee," He will not forget those tears. For one day in heaven, while you are strolling through the fields of light, the gates of pearl will swing wide open and that prodigal son or daughter will rush into your outstretched arms.
Psalm 126:5-6 5 They that sow in tears shall reap in joy. 6 He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.
All of those tears are now become pearls of great price and gems of great value. For I believe that they will be set in the crowns and the robes of the REDEEMED.
Romans 8:17-18 17 And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. 18 For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.
One day in eternity as we pass through the corridors of heaven, we the Redeemed of the earth shall see GOD'S BOTTLE OF TEARS, our sufferings, that now shall be transformed into eternal riches for the glory of God. And from the thousands, upon thousands, thousands of thousands, the numberless multitude of heaven shall ring out the cry. "God hath wiped away all tears from their eyes."
Our beloved savior knows our sufferings and takes note of our tears. He is preparing a place for HIS own and is waiting to receive us unto himself. “Wherefore comfort one another with these words.” (1 Thesalonians 4:18)