The questions was "What turn of event in your life has the Lord used to perfect you as a worshiper of Him?" Around the tables small groups of women began to answer...
"I lost my job last week, but I start a new one tomorrow."
"I had a baby a year ago."
"He broke our engagement right before the wedding."
And then one woman got only a few seconds into her "turn" before the tears started to roll down her cheeks. She talked about how she had walked away from God and church as a teenager, married, chose not to raise her kids in any specific faith, made several moves, and had basically been "driving" her own life for decades. "And then, about six weeks ago," she said, "He showed me what I was doing, and how incapable I am of driving my own life, and now He's driving my life again." The tears were streaming.
She started to apologize for the tears, but then she said, "No. Actually, I'm so grateful for these tender tears, and I hope I never lose them."
I understood completely, and thought about her as I drove home from the retreat, praying for her.
I woke up totally exhausted Sunday morning. I fell asleep forgetting to pray for Robert before bed like I try to do on Saturday nights. I also try and have his breakfast all ready on Sunday mornings, but barely pulled myself out of bed to send him off to church before the early service yesterday.
I was finally awake by the second service. The sermon was on Matthew 6, and highly convicting. Secret prayer life. Secret giving. Don't let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. Look your best while fasting.
It came time for Communion. I heard the familiar words of institution, and watched the bread being broken. I received my bread and juice and sat down taking them in one at a time. I thought about His body broken. His blood spilled. For me.
And this doesn't always happen, but it's happening more and more. Tender tears falling.
I thought of my new friend from the retreat.
Yes, I'm so grateful for these tender tears. May they come more frequently over what He's done for me. May I never lose them.