Have you ever found yourself sitting quietly when past memory comes to mind followed by a tear running down your cheek? Sometimes the tear could have be brought forth by a happy memory, like a wonderful time you spent with someone you love or the pride you took in someone like your child. But for most, I believe those times when a tear slowly leaves its home and crawls down our cheeks, it is brought out by a memory which hurts us. The loss of a loved one, the hurt of a broken relationship, the thought of being separated from your child or spouse. There are many reasons why we might weep and it varies from person to person because our memories are unique, but it is an experience that is shared by everyone who has ever lived. We can all empathize with it and the emotions that cause that tear to leave our eyes, typically sadness, connects us all.
Memories that cause us to cry seem to just sneak up on us when we least expect it. The memory can be triggered by an object or event that causes us to immediately recall the past. A specific fragrance worn by a past love. A toy that reminds you of your child. A voice or face that resembles that of a loved one who passed away. A song or melody that reminds you of a specific time of your life that was either difficult for you or that you cherished and miss dearly.
There is nothing wrong with crying. It is our soul speaking when our mouths refuse to. However, we should take those time when a memory comes up to also reflect on why it makes us feel that way and if there is a lesson to be learned from it. Is there something we did that contributed to the sad memory? Can we change that part of ourselves? If we’ve lost someone, could we learn to be more loving of people and cherish the moments we have together?
Me personally, when one of those moments come up, sometimes I try to “change the subject” and think of something else because the memory hurts or I am not mentally strong enough at the moment to deal with it. Sometimes we are too tired or beaten to want to dwell on the moment. Most times, however, I will reflect, which may cause me more sadness, but it’s also an opportunity to talk with God about the situation. Jesus calls the Holy Spirit the Great Comforter and that He is sent to guide and comfort us. Each of us have a way to deal with our memories. Some try to suppress them, others find comfort at the bottom of a bottle. Me? I find it in Christ and speaking with God helps me get through those moments when a memory forces itself to the forefront of my mind.
While a sad memory may cause us to cry, what about our current situation might cause use to as well?
- Sadness due to lost hope?
- Desire for a specific outcome?
- Feeling overwhelmed?
- Realization of one’s identity in relation to God?
One that always gets me is the feeling of loneliness in others. All of us have felt lonely at some point in our lives and it’s a terrible feeling. God created us to have relationships with him and with others. When we lack the physical presence of another person who we know cares about us or when we feel nobody cares about us, it hurts. It causes us to cry. I hate to think that there are so many people who feel this way in the world. That thought alone makes me tear up at times. We were meant to be loved, all of us, and it’s a darn tragedy that we can feel so lonely at times.
So, what memories are stored in your tears? How do you deal with them?