I was watching a video with the church that led into my message and out of nowhere I felt my throat tighten as I choked back tears. I don't know why I was choking them back, but maybe it was because I was bracing to take the preverbal pulpit and I didn't want to begin by bawling. I don't know, all I know is I was fighting tears with psychological mind games. It worked...I gained my composure as I stood to speak to the church.
Tears are an amazing gift.
When was the last time you let yourself cry? When was the last time you fought off fighting back tears and let yourself have a good cry? I amazed to hear of several people who can't cry. They want to cry, but their tear ducts almost rebel. I can't imagine how painful it must be to feel deeply about something without the capability of translating that emotion into something physical. I think God gave us tears so that our hearts could be seen dripping out of the corners of our eyes. Tears are the incarnation of the human heart. They give flesh to feelings. Goose bumps and tears have always struck me as proof of a master designer. Those two unnecessary instincts have no survival value, as C.S. Lewis puts it, they merely add value to survival.
There are actually three physical experiences that are unnecessary that speak of divine design. Tears, goosebumps, and orgasms. Any time I experience any one of these unneeded, yet precious outlets, I feel my heart instinctively lunge toward God. I throw myself toward God with Pinocchio-like intuition, lurching with wooden movements toward my Sculpture. Feeling in my flesh something that speaks of my meaning, my beginning, my encoded design.
But I digress. Back to tears.
The feeling starts somewhere in my stomach (the Bible refers to it as the bowels), it travels about 6 inches upward where it tightens inside my chest contracting as it forces the feelings further reaching my throat in the form of a latent lump constricting like a Boa snake pushing the emotions into my head and toward the inside corner of each eye seeking release. It is here that the feeling almost magically becomes fluid. This incarnation is nothing short of miraculous.
Yesterday as I was fighting back the "feelings into fluid" incarnation, it struck me what a gift crying really is. I think God knew what he was doing when he dreamt up man. I think he placed these little expressions and experiences and ecstasies within us so that we would, every once in a while, stop dead in our tracks and think, "Where did that come from?"..."Where did I come from?" Without being told to or taught to our hearts instinctively bend toward our beginning. The creation looks for its creator. Pinocchio looks for Geppetto.
And as we draw nearer to him, our wooden movements become more fluid.