Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Grieve, mourn and wail. Change your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.James 4:7-10
I have found this to be true. When we draw near to God in private times of worship, prayer, and scripture reading, the Lord will draw near to us. We come to Him with honesty, confessing our sin and seeking His forgiveness. We come to Him grieving the latest experience of loss, and we cry out to Him.
There is something powerful that happens when we cry before the Lord. Maybe we’ve faced a loss, a disappointment, a failure, a struggle of some kind. Maybe we’re confused or just exhausted by it all. When we humble ourselves and cry out to Him, there is an exchange that happens in our hearts. Our tears become like little drops of prayer. And God answers each one with a provision of His comfort and grace.
Jesus steps in, puts His arm around us, and pours His love into our hearts as the tears pour out of our eyes. We begin to feel the heaviness dissipate. Light breaks through the clouds. We can feel the joy start to invade the darkness. Hope seeps in. We feel a lightness on our shoulders where there was only burden before. By getting low and lower still, God is able to lift us up.
We leave our time with the Lord different than when we entered. We’re ready once again to face the day and face the battle. Our hope and strength has been renewed.
He gives strength to the wearyIsaiah 40:29-31
and increases the power of the weak.
Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall;
but those who hope in the Lord
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint.