Why did you cry during worship service?

My younger brother was visiting me in Houston for the first time from Washington state and he asked me this after attending our worship service. He was surprised to see his older brother, a grown man, shamelessly crying in public at the podium.

As a matter of fact, I frequently cry; not only during worship but even when I’m completely alone. When I feel the presence and the love of God in a deep, real way, I often shed tears.

I lost my parents when I was 7 years old. So for most of my life I had a strong longing deep inside for a father. A father who would be there to help guide me through my life. But more than that, I had a primal longing just to have a father at all. It’s something I’d been missing for almost as long as I can remember.

Then one day, all at once, I had a revelation. I realized that I did have a father. My heavenly Father. And besides being a father, God had blessed me abundantly with more than I could have desired. When I realized this, my desire for an earthly father completely disappeared and I started shedding tears of gratitude.

I also had a deep longing for the unconditional love of a parent. Even as an adult, I felt envious when I saw the way parents completely accept the whims and unruly behavior of their babies with love. Until again, I one day had a sudden revelation and realized that God did love me with the same unconditioal love I was longing for. Not only did He accept me the way as I was, but He entrusted me, even with all my faults, to an important mission. And again, this realization made me shed tears more frequently.

Deep in my heart I also had a longing for someone that I could genuinely respect and depend on. Then I saw the movie “The Killing Fields”. It’s about a friendship between a Cambodian and a foreign journalist. When Cambodia falls under a massive Communist assault, the Cambodian is imprisoned but the foreign journalist shows himself to be a true friend, persistently working to rescue him and never giving up, finally succeeding in the end. The depiction of this wonderful friendship also made me cry. For some reason, it made me think about Jesus. I realized that Jesus was this kind of friend. Jesus was persistent in seeking and finding me, and he even gave his life to win me freedom.

Once I truly realized that God is everything I want in a father and more, and as I continue to be struck anew by this truth, I cannot help but be moved to tears. And this is how I became the sappy person I am today, who sheds tears any time and any place.

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