The Spade of Sorrow

 On the campus of Cornell University, facing the lake, is a marble bench, presented by a graduating class years ago, on which is inscribed, “To those who shall sit here rejoicing, and to those who shall sit here lamenting – greeting and sympathy. So have we done in our time.”1

The Popular and Critical Bible Encyclopedia states, “Sorrow is the rendering of a number of Hebrew and Greek words, representing mental pain or grief, a rising from the privation of some good we actually possessed. It contracts the heart, sinks the spirits, and often mars the health of the body.”2

“How do you take a broken heart – shattered, wounded, and worn.brokenheartsketch
How do you put it together again, after it’s been so torn?
How do you keep your mind from thinking things you want to forget?
How do you keep on going when you really don’t care, and yet,
You hope somewhere, somehow, someway, someone will understand.
You have no purpose, no goal in life; then someone takes your hand;
You look up through tear-dimmed eyes, and Jesus is standing there.
Somewhere, somehow, someway, He had heard your desperate prayer.
He comforts you and tells you this, ‘Time and trust it will take
That shattered, wounded heart, time to heal the break.’
He tells you, ‘I will be with you all along the way.’
And you know in your soul He is what you need to start over again today.”3 

“God often digs wells of joy with the spade of sorrow.”4



  1. Norman Vincent Peale, You Can Win, Garden City Books, Garden City, NY, Copyright 1938, pp. 131 – 132
  2. Adult Teacher Supplement, First Quarter, 1967, Gospel Publishing House, Springfield, MO, Copyright 1966, p. 35 
  3. The Pentecostal Evangel, April 29, 1973 
  4. Walter B. Knight, Knight’s Master Book of New Illustrations, Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, Grand Rapids, MI, Copyright 1956, p. 639

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