In the middle of the day, I cry. Not a big, blubbering ugly kind of cry, but a tight throat, tears falling unbidden from my eyes cry. It could easily turn into a full-blown weep-fest, but I reign it in for the time being. Even so, the release helps. Crying performs a function; there’s wisdom in embracing our tears.

Like this hiss of my Instant Pot when I turn the valve to release pressure, crying releases pent-up emotion. It allows me to get to a safe place where I won’t burn anyone else or continue to harm myself by holding hurt in. So I weep silently for a while. I allow the tears to fall.

The circumstances that brought me to such an emotionally volatile place are not changed by my crying but I come to a place where I can let them go for a time. I say “for a time” because I’ve got a propensity to pick things up again, turn them over and around, examine them, and think about how I can reform them into something else. Crying reminds me that I’m not that powerful.

Later, in the evening, still burdened but not tearful, I hear a whisper about letting go and falling into that I might have missed if I hadn’t released some pressure by crying.

Maybe I’ll cry again today. Maybe I’ll let go and fall into. Maybe both. Likely both.


I’m a writer, reader, and creative. I thought by now I’d have things figured out, but I keep coming up with more questions. I think that’s okay. I’m here most mornings pondering ordinary things and the thin places where faith intersects.
  1. Linda, you may or may not have read my blog post last September with the same topic and title:

    Obviously I can certainly relate! Yes, crying can be a safety valve!

    1. Love your post and Cliff’s illustration, Marian. Yes, crying is definitely a slice of life.

  2. This is too long to post to Facebook, but I read it during my devotions earlier. It fits so well with your sentiment here. And I can only add that I know it to be true: Seasons of Tears are powerful gifts!


    “Sorrow is better than laughter; for by the sadness of the countenance the heart is made better.” (Ecclesiastes 7:3)

    When sorrow comes under the power of Divine grace, it works out a manifold ministry in our lives. Sorrow reveals unknown depths in the soul, and unknown capabilities of experience and service. Gay, trifling people are always shallow, and never suspect the little meannesses in their nature. Sorrow is God’s plowshare that turns up and subsoils the depths of the soul, that it may yield richer harvests. If we had never fallen, or were in a glorified state, then the strong torrents of Divine joy would be the normal force to open up all our souls’ capacities; but in a fallen world, sorrow, with despair taken out of it, is the chosen power to reveal ourselves to ourselves. Hence it is sorrow that makes us think deeply, long, and soberly.

    Sorrow makes us go slower and more considerately, and introspect our motives and dispositions. It is sorrow that opens up within us the capacities of the heavenly life, and it is sorrow that makes us willing to launch our capacities on a boundless sea of service for God and our fellows.

    We may suppose a class of indolent people living at the base of a great mountain range, who had never ventured to explore the valleys and canyons back in the mountains; and some day, when a great thunderstorm goes careening through the mountains, it turns the hidden glens into echoing trumpets, and reveals the inner recesses of the valley, like the convolutions of a monster shell, and then the dwellers at the foot of the hills are astonished at the labyrinths and unexplored recesses of a region so near by, and yet so little known. So it is with many souls who indolently live on the outer edge of their own natures until great thunderstorms of sorrow reveal hidden depths within that were never hitherto suspected.

    God never uses anybody to a large degree, until after He breaks that one all to pieces. Joseph had more sorrow than all the other sons of Jacob, and it led him out into a ministry of bread for all nations. For this reason, the Holy Spirit said of him, “Joseph is a fruitful bough…by a well, whose branches run over the wall” (Gen. 49:22). It takes sorrow to widen the soul.”
    –The Heavenly Life

    1. There is much wisdom in these words as you know, Kathleen. I’m going to chew on them for a while. I have not heard of “The Heavenly Life” by James Allen before, but a quick view of the description tells me I need to read it. The sample I read on Amazon reminds me a bit of a more contemporary Thomas á Kempis.

      1. There’s an actual audio version of The Heavenly Life on YouTube:

  3. Thank you for putting tears into words. I cried myself to sleep last night and will likely cry again in the next few days. We are not alone.

    1. It helps to know we’re not alone, Letty. Sending love.

  4. Linda, read your post this morning after dragging myself from bed. I wanted to stay there and cry awhile but knew I had things to get done. So I forced myself up and out. You and I have been at the same “party” it seems during these days of struggle and sorrow. I’m praying for you and many others in our shoes. We are definitely not alone as Letty says above.

    1. Oh, Sherrey, so often you and I are at the same juncture at the same time it seems. It does help to know we walk through these “days of struggle and sorrow” with kindreds. Sending love, dear one.

  5. Linda, I think most of us have been doing this for the last two years. Between Covid, the climate and politics there is little to be done to find our centers, except to cry, release the the angst that fills our minds and bodies. If I don’t let the tears flow when they arrive, I’ll surely have a melt down that is not pleasurable for anyone nearby. We’ve just been through so much change, we need time and a place to let it heal. Tears are necessary to bring us back to sanity.

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