I will never forget the very first movie that made the waterworks start flowing…for me it was Back Draft. It was so sad in the end that he lost his brother. I cried and I cried. (Guys are allowed to cry to and I was only 10!). Do you remember the last great movie that made you bawl? If we’re honest with ourselves, even us guys, we could probably write out a long list of movies that have made us cry over the years. A good story can really move us.
So why is it that we can cry for fictional stories but when it comes to lost people, those who do not know Jesus Christ, we never seem to be truly moved by their condition? Why is it that most times we shed more tears during a silly Nicolas Sparks movie than we ever do that lost people are dying and going to hell?
When Jesus calls us to follow Him, He calls us to take on His views, values, and to follow His commands. So how did He respond to the lost? Luke 19:42 “Jesus saw Jerusalem and wept over it, saying, “If you had known in this day, even you, the things which make for peace!”. Jesus said this before He was crucified. He knew the people of the city would reject Him and it broke His heart.
Jesus has the same heart as the Father. Ezekiel 33:11 “As I live! declares the Lord God, ‘I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that the wicked turn from his way and live. Turn back, turn back from your evil ways! Why then will you die”. The Father is equally heart broken for the lost.
What about the people we meet in the Bible? Look at Paul: “I am telling the truth in Christ, I am not lying, my conscience bearing me witness in the Holy Spirit, that I have great sorrow and unceasing grief in my heart.” (Romans 9:1-2) Paul wanted nothing more than for his fellow Jews to believe Jesus.
When Jesus saves us he takes from us the burden and weight of our sin, of our shame, of our past. He replaces all of this with peace and hope for the future. We like this. Yet he also asks us to shoulder a new kind of burden. A heart that aches for those who are lost. One that is never satisfied here on earth but longs for the time when Christ returns. This new burden is completely different than the old burden. The old burden of sin we once carried was not optional. It weighted us down to death. We were not strong enough to shoulder it. But this new burden is one that is shared. It is shared with Jesus himself. It is also shared with the community of those who follow Jesus. But this burden can also be laid aside but Jesus followers. Forgotten about and passed by.
To take on a burden for the lost is not an easy task, but if you are serious about following Jesus I challenge you to shoulder this burden. You will invite heartbreak and tears at times it’s true. But friends you will also walk side by side with Jesus as you help carry His message of grace to a lost and dying world. You will find a new closeness to the one you call Savior. You will experience grace all over again.
May we be those who shed our tears for the things of God.