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Why you cryin’?

“Jesus wept.”  John 11:35

I have a confession.

Today I –meI told my son to stop crying like a girl.  Usually -and pardon me for getting all stereotypical again- but USUALLY that’s an action saved for overly macho, uninformed men that think that tears are reserved for gays and girls.

But, no.  I’m the offender this time.

In my defense, it had been a long day.  My “Natural Disasters” had been picking fights with each other since the rooster crowed.  I warned them that someone was going to get hurt and -call me Miss Cleo- someone did.  When the crying started, I yelled over it and said,”Well, I TOLD you this would happen.”  I’m so sympathetic and caring.  It was when the crying escalated further that I used… the words.

The sad thing is, he had a right to cry.  He’d been hurt.  The fact that he PROBABLY had it coming, well, that’s another verse for another day.  But in that moment, all that I kept thinking was,”I didn’t even cry that hard during childbirth.”  And then I got a little on edge because I thought of how the media (and the rest of the country) portrays boys who cry: the nerdy, wimpy kid who always gets picked on.  And I got worried for my son- all my boys, actually- because the world is cruel and boys are held to a different standard than girls.  I worried that excessive crying would lead to name calling, isolation, failing grades, dropping out, homelessness, followed later by a lonely death.

Ok, so maybe I let my emotions run away with me slightly

And I showed my worry with name calling.

Hello, kettle, you’re looking quite dirty.

If you’ve ever read anything from the Bible at all, you can see that Jesus wasn’t a wimp.

  • He was a carpenter which meant that he wasn’t afraid to use his hands.
  • He was brutally beaten and not ONCE is there a mention in the Bible of Jesus screaming out in a sissy voice,”Owie, you’re hurting me!”
  • After being beaten, he then carried a 300 lb cross- a cross he would die on.

He did all that, and there are some men that shut down and act childish when they get the sniffles.  Hmmm…

But, I digress.

“Jesus wept.”  He wasn’t crying in this passage over a stubbed toe.  He was showing emotion over- among other things- the death of a friend; because -although he knew he’d raise Lazarus from the dead- he was hurting for his friends who were upset.  He was crying because he had a REASON to.

So, Jesus wept.  A manly man cried.  In front of other people.  He didn’t hold it inside, afraid to seem as if he was a lesser man.

And, here I am, slightly freaking out because my son is shedding tears after (possibly) being hit by flying toys.  A block, most likely- although there WAS a Ninja Turtle nearby.

Its days like today that I wonder if Jesus was thinking specifically of me when he gave John the inspiration to write that statement:

“Ok, now- John, when you write about what happened when Laz died, remember to use small words.  There’s going to be a girl years from now that will read this and -God love her- she’s not always the brightest bulb in the box- wait, you don’t know what a bulb is yet… the brightest flame in the firepit- and she tends to read into things.  Make it as simple as possible so she’ll remember.  ‘Jesus wept’?  Yeah, that’ll work.  Good job.  Short.  Sweet.  To the point.  Very nice.  Even SHE can’t read into that.”

Ok, Jesus.  I got it.


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