The Big Book of… Tears

You might think that because I’m an author, I love to read. I do read. Leaders have to be readers. I guess I like to read. It’s just that it takes me a long time to read… not because I have a disability, but because I process as I read. I can’t skim a book and gain the major points, set it aside and move on. My mind just doesn’t function that way.

So, I’m super selective about what I choose to read… not just topically, but the size of a book. Too many pages, and I just get bogged down. I don’t read any book… other than the Bible… every day. So most of the books I choose to read are 200 pages or less. In fact, when I wrote my first book, I was determined to make it between 100-150 pages for people like me who can’t stand a long book.

Truth is, I’ve never read War and Peace, and the rest of that story is that I probably never will. Nor do I plan to read other books which require multiple volumes and have thousands of pages.

There are some really big books out there. I might eventually read Laura Bush’s Big Book of History, or the Big Book of Jokes for Kids, but you shouldn’t expect to find me reading most big books.

Yet I was intrigued when reading Scripture to find that God has at least one big book. I’m not sure if it’s one giant book or a book with multiple volumes. I don’t know whether it is on a scroll or in digital format. I just know that Scripture records for us in several places that God has a book that would have to be big to hold all it contains. And you might be surprised to find what He writes in His “Big Book.”

For example, God’s “Big Book” is a Big Book of Tears. Psalm 56:8 says, “You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in Your bottle. You have recorded each one in Your book.”

That’s crazy, right? Of all the things God could keep track of and write in His “Big Book,” He chose to record your every year… and mine. Most of us want to forget most of the things that bring us to tears in life, but God chooses to record those experiences and feelings for eternity.

Why? Why would He do that?

I believe He does it for two reasons:

1) He wants us to know that He knows… and cares. Sometimes we hurt and think no one notices or cares. God keeps a record of our tears to let us know that He is right here with us… that He knows… that He cares… that He is “touched with the feeling of our infirmities” (Heb. 4:15).

and 2) He is keeping track of everything the enemy of our souls has done to cause us sadness and pain so that He can bring him to account for those actions, and bless us for the times when we have been mistreated. Isaiah tells us that God will restore to us double for our trouble. How would God know what double is if He wasn’t keeping a good record? So, He captures every tear in a bottle, and records the instance in His “Big Book of Tears.”

If life has brought you to tears today, just know that He knows… He cares… and He is going to set things right one day. That’s one big book that might just be worth reading!


Author: Allen Chapin

- Christian, husband, dad, friend, leader, author and speaker - Life Purpose = Love & Encourage, Offering Grace & Hope - Life Motto = Living for the applause of nail-scarred hands - Life Verse = Matthew 25:21

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