Jesus wept…

Last week on Facebook, a mom shared her story of grief with me.  I thought her experience was so important for us to all understand that I asked her if I could share it with you.  She agreed.

In my book, Real Moms…Real Jesus, we look at the humanity of Jesus.  Jesus was fully God, but also fully man.  He experienced everything we experience: hunger, weariness, disappointment, betrayal, grief, and more.  Because of that, we have a God who feels our feelings and understands our struggles. 

I think this story illustrates that beautifully.

 

About 2 years ago my husband left me and my daughter.  There were moments that I couldn’t breathe and I was quite certain I would never feel joy again.

I was ashamed, I was crushed, I was broken. I tried to muddle my way through it as best I could, talking to God when I could.

But one day I broke and I lashed out at God. I was at the absolute peak of my anger and pain and as I yelled at Him and took it out on Him, expecting to “feel” His anger at me for doing so.

Instead, however, I felt as though He was crying too.

I felt in that moment that God was just as broken as I was. He hated to see me in such pain and all He wanted to do was hold me. So, through my sobs I spoke the words to Jeremy Camp’s song “I Still Believe:”
I still believe in Your faithfulness
I still believe in Your Truth
I still believe in Your Holy Word
Even when I don’t see You, I still believe.

I closed my eyes and in that moment I saw Jesus kneeling in front of me and He wrapped His arms around me, entirely encompassing me. My sobs slowly faded and I felt my entire body go numb. Even if I wanted to cry, I couldn’t. He calmed me entirely. It is probably the most intimate moment I have ever had with Him.

What I want women to know is that it is OK to be fully honest with God. He can take it.  I am sorry that I lashed out at God, but in a way I’m really not because I have never felt more loved than in that moment. I felt completely raw and exposed and I let Him have it all.

From that night forward God began healing me.

What you are weeping about, Jesus is weeping with you.  Where you are discouraged, He understands.  Where you are just dog-tired, He gets it!  Jesus understands our wide range of emotions and experiences. 

I’m going to give away a copy of Real Moms…Real Jesus today.  Simply leave a comment by midnight Thursday sharing what you are feeling today.  It doesn’t even have to be a sentence…just a word or two will do.  I’ll draw one winner on Friday.

You are not alone…Jesus understands…and so do other moms.

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110 Responses to Jesus wept…

  1. Candie Pittman says:

    vulnerable and broken…

  2. Jamie says:

    Today I struggle with trusting in Gods plan. It is easy on days that things seem to be going my way. But, when I have fears or uncertainty it is difficult for me not to worry and instead trust in His plan for me.

  3. Cindy says:

    Lost and alone. 🙁

    • Diane says:

      Cindy-you are never alone. I feel your pain and I’ve been there. Please respond!

      • Cindy says:

        Thank you Diane!!! I am in a tough season of motherhood, wifehood;) ( is there such a word?? Haha!) and it is wearing me out! I do feel lost and alone at this time and words like yours help!

    • Roberta Fuller says:

      Cindy,
      I know how you feel. I have and do feel that way too. Then I am reminded that Jesus said He would NEVER leave me. And His body of believers surround us. Take care. God Bless.

      • Cindy says:

        Thank you Roberta!!! Yes we need to keep the faith don’t we! I am in a very tough season of motherhood and dealing with other things feeling so lost these days. Reminders and knowing others feel like that too at times brings comfort. Thank you!!

  4. Janine says:

    I am so overwhelmed & angry today. I am tired of dealing with a child with autism.

    • Tina says:

      I can’t even imagine the challenges sweetie, but I am praying God will renew your strength and patience and send someone to give you a much deserved break!

  5. Melissa Fruendt says:

    Exhausted

  6. Beth says:

    Distant and disconnected from my spouse.

    • jlynno says:

      Been there… it’s a challenging place. I’m praying you will see the light… keep looking up. Connecting is a challenge, but not hopeless. Focus on what you saw in him at the beginning… during those incredible early days before bills and responsibilties set in. Where there is God, there we will find hope, too.

  7. Laura says:

    Stuck. The words people write make my heart break. Praying.

  8. Roberta Fuller says:

    Frightened about a child’s medical condition

  9. Jill says:

    Hopeful and blessed

  10. Kathy Stevenson says:

    sad

  11. holly says:

    feeling overwhelmed

  12. holly says:

    overwhelmed

  13. Tina says:

    Happy and excited! I’m glad to have survived a story like the one you told above…abandoned by my husband, but protected and strengthened by God! God will bring beauty out of whatever ashes you find yourself in! The weather here is beautiful and my kids are coming back from spending half their spring break with their dad when I get off work at noon today! Now we can have a real spring break for a few days!

    • Heather Finnegan says:

      Tina-so awesome that you are on the other side and focusing on the positive! Blessings and happiness to you!

  14. Stacie says:

    overwhelmed and exhausted

  15. Rebecca says:

    encouraged and reminded

    reading comments on here, I have been encouraged by these women’s humanity and reminded that I don’t have to carry my burdens alone!

    thank you!

  16. Peggy Lorenz says:

    So discouraged and lonely…in a marriage that seems so broken.

    • JillSavage says:

      You are not alone, Peggy. Lonely, I’m sure…but not alone. There are women here who care very much for you and your marriage that seems so broken.

  17. Kori Stover says:

    Drained.

  18. Amanda says:

    Anxious and frightened trying to rememeber that god allowed his disciple to walk on water and he can allow me to walk in faith. Trying to remember that God provides

  19. Brandi says:

    Lonely and full of regret yet courageous as I know that Jesus has this storm handled!

  20. Maria Taylor says:

    Physically & emotionally exhausted but at the same time so blessed.

  21. Sara says:

    Blessed and humbled.

  22. Teresa M. says:

    Scared to trust God in bringing my kids home next year to homeschool.

    • Karen says:

      Teresa,
      Don’t be afraid. I just made that decision in the middle of my daughter’s junior year of high school. Best schooling decision I have ever made. I wish I had done it sooner! Trust God!

      • JillSavage says:

        Teresa and Karen, so did I! I brought Erica home in the middle of her junior year. It was the best decision I ever made! I also homeschooled Anne in 7th grade and Evan in 5th and 6th grades. I don’t regret any of those decisions at all.

  23. Ashley says:

    Confused…

  24. Jen says:

    emotional today…sad for others…feeling alive in Christ again but seeking to trust Him with the unknown future. Also hurting for my husband who is a wounded, tired shepherd.

  25. Autumn says:

    Frusterated, Discouraged and alone….because of these feelings I also feel disconnected from my relationship with God. I talk with God daily but not sure if I am in tune to the answers he has for me.

    • Teri says:

      I wrote out my feelings on facebook about this subject and then thought I should read what others are feeling. While reading, when I came to this I thought it was mine!
      I don’t know if I should laugh or cry.

  26. Bee says:

    Exhausted but thankful…and sometimes thankful but exhausted.

  27. Amy Hudson says:

    Overwhelmed and frustrated

  28. Stephanie says:

    Blessed — thankful for grace and mercy that only He can give

  29. Tracey says:

    Overwhelmed and excited. I had a hysterectomy 6 weeks ago at the age of 34, and my husband received a promotion/transfer 4 weeks ago. We will be moving from Chicago to St. Louis (away from my family) as soon as we can sell our house. The perfect timing would be beg-mid summer so the kids can finish school this year and start a new one fresh in the fall. Please pray for this transition in our lives. Thanks! 🙂

  30. Melanie says:

    Dealing with family betrayal. Angry and hurt.

  31. Veronica says:

    I can relate to this story. I fell in love with God, I’m married to awesome Godly man now and happy. I’m healed.

  32. Heather Finnegan says:

    Tired-taking care of our friends 2 children in addition to our own while they chaperone a band tour, for 10 days. 4 boys; 7, 6, 3, 8 months…..and I thought I wanted 4…maybe 2 is good 😉 This is one of those things I still wonder about. I ALWAYS wanted 3 or 4 kids. But my husband lost his job, my kids are on medicaid and we don’t have maternity coverage. And wondering if we need to stop at 2 so I can go back to work and help out more financially in a few years….praying that I can be patient while God shows me the way to go rather than barge ahead like usual. Still hard to give up the dream of more kids. I feel like I am in mourning 🙁

  33. LaMona says:

    Angry, hurt, grief & sorrow.
    My father in law took his life 3 weeks ago with no
    explanation why. Now only son, my husband is
    picking up the pieces, taking care of business.
    And my son has been asking lots of questions why
    at age 5, and I have no answers to why. read book
    Heaven is for Real by Todd Burpo, and that was helpful
    Just all dynamics of everything have changed, praying
    the ‘family’ curse is broken and we stand to leave a legacy for our
    children & children’s children! Amen!

  34. Denise says:

    Jill, as always, thank you for your honesty. For being real. It is, indeed, how we should all be. I can relate to the story you posted. When I found out my husand’s infidelities now 3 years ago, devastated was an undestatement as to how I felt. When he told me he wanted a divorce rather than to work on our marriage issues, a whole new level of devastion was felt. I have never felt hurt like that before. I have experiened a lot of loss in my life and can honestly say that death was an easier loss to cope with than the destruction of my once happy home and family. I recall the various stages of grief and I recall breaking down and being honest with God about my anger, hurt, betrayal, and bitterness. I truly felt Him sobbing with me, consoling me, and comforting me. These two years have been rough as a single mom. The divorce was long and painful and the relationship with my now ex-husband is beyond awful. It is easy to be discouraged and to feel forgotten…by God, by friends, by family, and by church, as it has been such a long ordeal. So I speak to Him often about every issue. One of my favorite quotes (of Dr. Seuss) is “Say what you mean and mean what you say because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.” I follow that. I know I matter to God. So I give it to Him…my hurts, my worries, my exhaustion. He listens and He answers…always on time, never late. And I praise Him in the storm…and I praise Him for the sunshine and the rainbows and the birds singing and what will be the final result of these trials. Thank you Jill for your honesty and for always being real. Your life-work with Hearts at Home is making differences in soooo many lives! You are an inspiration.
    Denise

  35. Amber says:

    Today I was feeling defeated until this post showed up in my inbox. It was EXACTLY what I needed to read at the moment I needed it. So now I am thankful for this post and for the so many things I have to be thankful for. I know I am not alone, it is nice to be reminded of that. Thank you for this beautiful post and for giving me the reminder I needed today.

  36. Sabrina says:

    I am feeling revived and joyful. God has seen me through separation and divorce; but because I made a decision to cling to Him regardless of the circumstances; I am on the other side of devastation. I am hopeful and blessed. God is faithful. He is my friend.

  37. Ashley Crawford says:

    Happiness as we are nearing my daughters 2nd birthday, but sadness as I continue to morn the loss of our 2nd child due to a miscarriage in February.

  38. Kristi says:

    Worried 🙁

  39. Becky D says:

    Thanks for being open about your feelings. I also was left by my husband 10 years ago and I have been on a roller coaster since. I have to confess that I have wanted to lash out at God at times but then I feel ashamed that I’m disappointing God because I don’t have enough faith to feel contented with my circumstances as the apostle Paul says. I think I must be real dense or something, that I’m not learning what God is trying to teach me and that I’m not getting the point. Yet, thankfully, I don’t feel quilty or condemned. I can imagine how Joseph must have felt through his life experiences. It’s just that I am so emotionally tired and really wanting some Promised Land blessings. Maybe I’m just not seeing them. Oh, God, open my understanding.

    • JillSavage says:

      Becky,

      I am sure you are tired. Are you aware of the devotional book “Jesus Calling”? I think it could be really helpful for you. You might want to get a copy.

  40. Shelley says:

    I had a very similar experience myself the first spring after my husband left. I was talking with Him and asked, “How could you know how I feel? You are God and above all this. How can you know grief, desperation, betrayal….” Into my heart popped, “Think of my night in the Garden. I felt every single human emotion possible that night. My best friends betrayed me and abandoned me. My Father would forsake me. Daughter, I HAVE been there. I DO know every single thing you ever have and ever will feel. One of the reasons I can love you so much is because of what happened that night in the Garden.” That night, I began to realize the humanity of our Lord and it was that night I began my personal relationship with Him and knew I could trust Him to be the very best friend I’d ever have.

  41. Liz says:

    Not sure… Is it a pity party, postpartum, or just plain stress? I feel so guilty for not being grateful and happy for all the blessings i havw- inclufing a much wanted 8 week old baby. One thing is sure, I cannot get out of this funk by myself.

    • Lisa says:

      Liz – I suffered a terrible bout of postpartum anxiety after the birth of my daughter almost 2 years ago. All I wanted to do was run away from her, my family, everything. I finally came through it, but not until God brought me to my knees in constant prayer. Looking back, it seems like a bad dream. I feel eternally blessed today, and the experience made me a stronger mom and a more a faithful Christian. You are not alone. My prayers are with you.

  42. Karen says:

    I go back and forth between fear and hope. I do have complete faith in God that His plan is for salvation of my daughter. But sometimes the fear gets the best of me because I am living in the moment. I have to remember that God sees the whole picture and when I do that, then I have hope.

  43. Wendee says:

    Thankful – for woman willing to share their hurts with others so others can heal.

  44. lora says:

    Not good enough

  45. Rachel says:

    Between feeling in control and calm to feeling on edge and at my limit.

  46. Katie says:

    stuck and empowered at the same time

  47. Cheryl says:

    I can so relate – been there, done that, and have never felt so loved.

  48. Lisa says:

    not good enough and sad

  49. Diane says:

    I, too, have felt a desperate frustration and lashed out at God. As a result of my honesty, I also felt his peaceful comfort surround me and envelope me in love. It was the most calming yet joyful experience that I’ve had. God can handle it when we can’t.

  50. wendy says:

    Too Busy

  51. Bethany Kennedy says:

    Happy but a little discouraged because I see where I want our family to be (in a house and out of debt) but it’s not happening as fast as I want. Trying to remember that it will all happen in God’s time.

  52. Ginny says:

    Tired of being tired and angry…

  53. Lisa says:

    Today I feel encouraged. I recently admitted to myself and my God that I don’t place nearly enough trust in Him. Other women’s stories of incredible faith through deep personal struggles inspire me to take the next steps toward finding new ways to put my trust in God and His plan for my life. Thank you, ladies, for helping me feel less alone today.

  54. RYontz says:

    thank you fo your real stories of women desiring God.

  55. Dana K. says:

    Tired but hopeful…
    Dana K.

  56. Amanda says:

    Today I am frustrated and mad at myself for the way I handled a couple of situations last week. I am also very thankful for a forgiving God, and the opportunity to learn from my mistakes.

  57. Ashley says:

    So grateful for my blessings but unworthy of them.

  58. Diane says:

    Blessed. Walked in faith for years through uncertain and unpleasant times. Know that God has more blessings in store for you than you could ever imagine for yourself. I claimed Romans 8:28 and Matthew 7:11 for myself. Find the scriptures you need to pray for yourself and do it and believe. God loves you all and you are a blessing!

  59. Amy says:

    Stretched.

  60. Carol says:

    Dealing with personal grief at times. I have 5 children: 4 are adopted and my youngest, our only birth child, was a true miracle. I’m so deeply grateful for all of my children, but I feel sad that I never had another birth child as we had hoped for, prayed for, and underwent more medical procedures for. It can sometimes be difficult to hear stories about women that have had many birth children so easily…

    • Tammy says:

      As an adopted child, I feel that the fact that my parents adopted me and loved me was a miracle in my life. I can’t imagine the pain of desiring more birth children and not being able to have them, but I wondered if it would encourage you to remember that God used you to be a miracle in the lives of your four adopted children.

      • Carol says:

        Tammy,
        Thank You, Thank You, Thank You. I would not have imagined that God would use the words of someone that had been adopted themselves to reach out to my heart. Only He would have prompted you to speak those words. Though sometimes things in life don’t work out how we had planned, I know that God is good and He loves us all very much. My Redeemer Lives!

  61. amanda r says:

    Overwhelmed, frustrated, and tired. Have 2 girls that don’t listen to me, and so much housework to do. At the same time trying to figure out how bills are going to get paid!

  62. Shawna says:

    utterly exhausted…

  63. Cathy says:

    Some days I feel abandoned by God, but then I realize he is still there going through everything with me. I love him with all my heart and couldnt see life without him.

  64. RaeAnne says:

    Tired, but full of joy and encouraged!

  65. Carole Tidwell says:

    In two weeks, it will be 15 years that my husband instantly left this earth from a massive heartattack at the age of 44, to be in the prescence of Jesus immediately. I have not had one date since then (I was 40 at the time). I AM HOPEFUL that GOD will bring someone into my life when He is ready for me to have another husband. WAITING, and HOPEFUL. :o)

  66. Ginny says:

    Tonight I feel so drained and that I have failed my young daughter by not demonstrating patience or grace. Yelling at her over stupid math homework – ugh! We butt heads a lot, and I pray for God to soften my heart and remove my anger over stupid things, yet I still feel broken.I sure do struggle with putting God first and being obedient to Him!

    • Cindy says:

      Ginny I know how you feel!! The job of being a Mom is so hard and draining and the little things can add up and get to be too much. I too pray a lot to God to soften my heart and remove my anger and feel broken. I butt heads with my two daughters every hour it seems in this season of motherhood!! Hang in there and *HUGS* you are NOT alone!!

    • JillSavage says:

      Ginny, just apologize, ask her for forgiveness, and move on. We all do it.

  67. Maria says:

    It’s not about you, it’s about Jesus! Are the words laid on my heart as I soul search.
    Joshua 1:6-9.

  68. Treva says:

    As I sit here awaken by a stopped up toilet, helping my daughter that’s not feeling well; having trouble breathing & coughing, I read your blog…. I am at such a loss for words. Our family has been through so much these past few months…my sis is going through a divorce, mom in the hospital, sick kiddos, financial difficulties….the list goes on & on…however I’m reminded that God will never leave me or forsake me. God is still God. Blessings

  69. Rebecca H says:

    Tired- physically & emotionally: chronic pain issues;frustrating parenting issues( struggling to homeschool one son w/ Aspergers & one that has undiagnosed as yet major behavioral issues-@7);broken marriage: separated w/infidelity & no working on our relationship while maintaining daily contact for parenting-a loving dad. So much sadness over all of the failures…wondering if I can ever get it right & feel happiness again. Know & love God…would not be doing this good without Him…just still feel helpless,hopeless & alone so much.

    • JillSavage says:

      I’m so sorry, Rebecca. I know you are weary. There are no words to change things….but God can turn your mourning into dancing someday.

      • Rebecca H says:

        That’s the hope I am holding onto…& trying to find the strength (&joy) in Him…thanks for your encouragement!

  70. Lisa M says:

    Overwhelmed – taxes need to be done, tired from interrupted sleep, frustrated with how to deal w/ an unmotivated 17 year old who doesn’t seem to care about school or responsibility, house needs to be cleaned, all 4 kids have different needs (preschool, grade school, jr. high, & high school!) am sure tomorrow will be a better day, but today I am tired and overwhelmed.

  71. Lisa M says:

    But, also grateful…. for all we do have and that my frustrations and being overwhelmed are shortlived….. we are not facing so many of the life altering situations that so many women around the world are going through. The house will get clean some day… tho perhaps not for many years. ;), the teenager will eventually grow up (I pray), as will the others. And, the taxes will be done on time. Blessings on your day, as well, for the Lord is good.

  72. Anxious but hopeful

  73. Stephanie DeClercq says:

    I did not get to read this until today, so I am going to tell you how I am feeling today. I am feeling stressed due to quitting smoking recently, helpless in the face of my daughter’s recent diagnosis of depression and anorexia, sad that I cannot take her pain away and bring back her smile….yet I know that God has a plan for us and though it is not apparent to me at this time, when He is ready, it will be revealed.

  74. Meredith says:

    exhausted!

  75. Dianne says:

    I remember when I was going through infertility, miscarriages, a molar pregnancy, the loss of my Father and my brother-in-law’s cancer – I sat on my back porch and it began to rain literally only on me. not my neighbors yard but right on me. I thought, God why have you abandon me?? When I told my small group – my pastor’s wife said: Maybe God was weeping with you. I couldn’t see it then through my pain but 5 years later – i know that to be true. God weeps when we weep.

  76. Dana says:

    Today I feel blessed, hopeful and full of encouragement.

  77. April says:

    Today I am remembering what someone I trusted did to me 16 years ago when I was a vulnerable young teenager. When people do ugly, horrific acts and we have to carry the scars, it feels unbearable. I have been tempted to believe that Jesus could never understand my pain. Afterall, he was never a teenage girl. But then I remember that on the cross, he took the weight of every sin on his shoulders. He knew how those sins affected both the sinner and those sinned against. And a sin against me was a sin against Him as well. He felt my pain, and he wants to carry it for me today.

  78. Susan says:

    exhausted, overwhelmed, stressed, sad, scared, waiting

  79. Kristen says:

    Overwhelmed, sad, emotional. My hubby has been working 3 hours away since Thanksgiving and I am just plain tired of it. At least he has work… Being a single parent all week while he’s gone is exhausting. I really don’t know how single moms and military wives do it. I just want my family together and under one roof again.

  80. Martina says:

    Why must life be so difficult and relationships so complicated?

  81. Lindsey says:

    Hopeful. Jeremiah 29:11

  82. Robin Still says:

    Worried, stressed, tired and tried…but in the end I know I am blessed beyond measure.

  83. Lisa G says:

    All of the above at some time or another. I am comforted in knowing I am not the only one.
    It’s been almost 18 years since my 10 year old cousin died in a car accident. For the day she lingered in the hospital, I prayed she would be healed and I clung to the verses “faith of a mustard seed”, “ask and you will receive”, “believe and do not doubt”. I believed with my whole heart she would be healed. The next day, she was declared brain dead, they took her off the machines and she died. It totally rocked my world and the ripped the fabric of my faith out from underneath me. You can be sad and heart broken for some else’s tragedy, but when it happens to you or your family, it is a different animal. I took very little to no comfort in prayer for about 3 years, but thankfully I had Godly people around me and I still sought Him. I felt I needed to prove His very existance before I could believe anything else. From there I have continued to study the Bible, grown in my faith and learned many lessons. Some are…

    It’s okay to be honest and angry with God, He can take it. (It’s not like He doesn’t already know.) If He couldn’t handle it, He would be a wimp and my God is no wimp! Atleast I am still talking to Him.

    Sometimes there are no earthly reasons good enough to explain why some things happen and we may not know this side of heaven why some things happened.

    Hope is still a good thing, even if we are disappointed.

    God loves us, even when the answer to our prayer is “no”.

    He really can make good things happen out of a mess, even if it isn’t what we originally wanted, but we have to let Him work and get ourselves out of the way.

    Praying for you all.

  84. karie says:

    concern for my family