Scripture Reading:

John 11:17-37

When Jesus saw her weeping . . . he was deeply moved in spirit and troubled. . . . Jesus wept.

John 11:33-35

The 20-year-old son of my dear friends died suddenly in a skateboarding accident, causing their world to stop and flooding them with a tsunami of grief. Their beloved son with his joy-filled, larger-than-life personality was gone. I believe Jesus weeps with them.

I can imagine my friends running up to Jesus like Martha and Mary did and blurting out, “Where were you? If you had only been here, our son would still be alive!” It’s no wonder the mourners there wondered why Jesus, who had healed blind people, did not keep Lazarus from dying.

For many of us, weeping at a funeral comes naturally; we feel compassion for those who are grieving. We are moved by their tears. Death is a harsh reality on this side of eternity. It’s not the way things are supposed to be.

Not all tears move us, how­ever. The sobbing of a teen who is pregnant, a mother whose son was racially profiled, a protester who was sprayed with tear gas, or a mass shooter who was bullied in school might generate judgment instead. Do we reserve our sympathy for the innocent and like-minded? Christians are called to weep with all who weep, as ­modeled by Christ, who saw broken people as sheep without a shepherd.

When you wept, Jesus, you showed the depths of your compassion for us. Lord, inject our hearts with the same compassion, and move us to come alongside all who are hurting. Amen. (BMB)

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