“Record my misery; list my tears on your scroll — are they not in your record?” – Psalm 56:8
We collect memories of those we have loved and lost. Decorating the wall of our hearts, old photographs hang. Whispers of promises made, “I love you” phrases that were once said. The dead never really leave us. Their memories, like ember, burn on…
What lingers becomes our source of sadness and strength. Though we find ourselves emotional about what is left of those who we love, we know that these fragments of what used to be keep us going.
I’m encouraged by Psalm 56:8 where we witness David, the man after God’s heart, who plead to have his misery recorded. Which seems like a strange request, but let’s look at it closely.
The word “record” means:
- to set down in writing or the like, as for the purpose of preserving evidence.
- to cause to be set down or registered
What David is asking is simple: he wants God to take special account of his misery and pain. Can you relate? The finite nature of the body we live in can often cause us to approach God asking to be seen. After all, we live in such a massive world. It is easy, especially when we are grieving, to feel small and unnoticed. I don’t believe God is at all frustrated when we ask Him to notice us and our pain (or joy for that matter). He knows that we are fleshy. He knows that we can’t see what He sees. From our vantage point, we are tiny and fragile and the world is massive and often terrifying.
Asking God to see us and make a record of our pain isn’t nonsensical, it’s necessary. While God has the ability to see and know the world, but He loves when we come to Him asking him to see and know us personally. I am thinking about Matthew 1:23 which says, ““The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”).” This level of intimacy is so important when we struggle with grief. As we collect memories and are reminded of the painful absence of a loved one, remembering that Jesus is always with us gives us strength. Through Him, we become able to endure, through Him we are able to carry on…
“The smoke of the incense, together with the prayers of God’s people, went up before God from the angel’s hand.” Revelation 8:4
I don’t know where you are in your grieving process. Have you asked God, like David, to record your tears? I want to encourage you in this, I am fully confident that your prayers go up to God, my sister, by the hands of an angel. Yes! An angel. Can you picture it?
“O Lord, You have searched me and known me.
You know when I sit down and when I rise up;
You understand my thought from afar.
You scrutinize my path and my lying down,
And are intimately acquainted with all my ways.
Even before there is a word on my tongue,
Behold, O Lord, You know it all.”
You may be collecting memories, sister, but always remember that God sees you and hears you and collects all of your prayers and tears. You are not in this season alone.