I’ve officially reached the point (it happens every pregnancy) where I cry randomly at songs. (When I was pregnant with #2, I inexplicably broke down crying every time I heard “Country Girl Shake It For Me.” Please don’t google the lyrics if you don’t know what I’m talking about, it’s ridiculously silly and it’ll negatively impact your opinion of me.) I’m not actually much of a crier, so it’s always a little startling (especially for the kids) when I start blubbering in the car for no apparent reason.
Most recently, it’s been “After the Last Tear Falls” by Andrew Peterson. Here it is… I’ll wait.
Or here’s a slightly abridged piece of it, if you’re in a hurry.
‘Cause after the last plan fails, after the last siren wails
After the last young husband sails off to join the war
After the last “this marriage is over”
After the last young girl’s innocence is stolen
After the last years of silence that won’t let a heart open
There is love…And in the end… is oceans and oceans of love and love again
We’ll see how the tears that have fallen
Were caught in the palms of the Giver of love and the Lover of all
And we’ll look back on these tears as old tales
‘Cause after the last tear falls there is love
[Aside for those who worry about this sounding like Rob Bell’s “Love Wins” theology… His lyrics are frequently pretty unmistakably orthodox. Like here and here, for a small start.]
One of the things I love so much about Peterson’s writing is how well he handles the dissonance we live with as humans.
I love the idea (the unmistakably true one) that all the Sad Things are discreet events. Sirens, abuses, deaths… they’re all countable things.
And they’re not infinite. They are many. More than anyone can track, with the exception of the God who knows the number of hairs on each head. But not infinite. There will be an end. And not just any end. A good one. As my favorite children’s Bible puts it, God will make all the sad things, even death, come untrue.
And the tears? The ones that Psalm 56:8 says are recorded? They’ll just be stories. Stories of battles fought and things survived and, ultimately, the faithfulness of a God who loves us.