Two guests that often show up a few days after the arrival of Poneros are named Crying and Sadness. They are different in type from the others I have mentioned thus far. While they come with Poneros, they are not necessarily part of his clan. I am not sure whether he lets them in or whether they have been here all along. I have often thought that they were part of the Landlord’s design of the house. Either way, they show up every time. Not only is their entry curious, but their expediency in helping people deal with the Uninvited is hard to gauge as well. I do count them among the Uninvited, but at the same time it seems as if they are needed. Let me explain.

Crying and Sadness are sisters and look very much alike, but they are also different. Let me talk about Sadness for a moment and then move on to Crying. Sadness is most visible when Poneros is in the room. Some people love Sadness and some people hate her. Sadness is not necessarily ugly or pretty and it does not really feel wrong to be with her (like most of the other Uninvited). She, unlike Self-Pity, seems very natural. When you look at her, she resembles the colors of fall. Nothing really stands out, but she has a warm comforting dullness about her. She does not try to convince you of anything or persuade you in any way, she’s just there. In fact, I don’t remember ever hearing her voice at all. But when you are in her presence, it seems right. She somehow helps you to cope with the presence of Poneros. This makes it very tempting to stay with her beyond her ability to help. Again, it is not because she is so attractive, but she is just comfortable. You must understand one thing about Sadness – once she has arrived, if Poneros has done enough destruction, she does not ever leave, she just kinda fades in and out. If things go naturally and people don’t spend to much time with her, she will fade to the point that you only devote attention to her here and there. Even when faded, her presence is felt. In an ironic way she points to the hope of the future when, as the Old Stories go, the keys of Poneros will be taken away.  She also serves as a pleasant reminder of the way the house was before Poneros arrived and the way things will be once he is gone for good.

Now, as I said before, there are some that spend to much time with Sadness and and find themselves being unfenced by some of the more destructive Uninvited like Depression. But there are also those who avoid Sadness all together. This can be very unfortunate because, while one of the Uninvited, Sadness is needed from time to time. She is kind of like sleep. While she does not seem productive in her presence, she does make a positive difference as long as she is not abused. If you avoid her completely, you will end up spending all your time with Hard Heart. And Hard Heart has a reputation of locking many of the doors in your house that bring much joy. He is very destructive.

Now Crying is interesting. Sometimes Crying and Sadness are confused by people. This is easy to do. They are not twins, but they look very much alike. Crying has the same abuses and benefits as Sadness, so I offer the same warnings. Crying is younger than Sadness and does not have the respect that Sadness does.  Crying only shows up with Sadness and makes herself available to aid her sister in what she does. While the need for Sadness can be compared to sleep, I think the best way to compare the need for Crying is the rain. She is very important while Poneros is present, but only in the right amounts. Too much or too little of her are equally destructive. 

I, myself, am not too good at dealing with Crying. While I always recognize the presence of Sadness, I hardly ever see Crying. I don’t really know why. I feel as if I need to find and talk to her, but I don’t find many opportunities. Some people say that it is because I am not really willing to talk to her. I am not really sure. I do know that many times when I have found her in the past I have I tried to talk to her, but almost every time just as I begin to get my words out someone comes around the corner and I quickly act as if I was talking to someone else. I guess I am ashamed to be seen with her. However, the funny thing is when I see other people talking to her, I am compelled to talk to her as well. I just can’t help it. There is another curious thing that happens that I don’t understand. Crying shows up often while I am asleep. In my dreams somehow I am able to talk to her quite a bit. There is no shame and once I finally get started talking in my dreams, all the things that I have been trying so hard to say to her for so long come out all at once. Sometimes this becomes so intense that I wake myself up and I am still talking to her. But by then she has disappeared. I quickly go look for her, but I never can find her. I always feel as if there was so much more I needed to say to her and I wish that she would come back.

Well that is all I have to say about Crying and Sadness, but one thing that I might add. The Old Stories do say that one day both Crying and Sadness will be unavailable. I think that this is connected to taking away the keys from Poneros.

C Michael Patton
C Michael Patton

C. Michael Patton is the primary contributor to the Parchment and Pen/Credo Blog. He has been in ministry for nearly twenty years as a pastor, author, speaker, and blogger. Find him on Patreon Th.M. Dallas Theological Seminary (2001), president of Credo House Ministries and Credo Courses, author of Now that I'm a Christian (Crossway, 2014) Increase My Faith (Credo House, 2011), and The Theology Program (Reclaiming the Mind Ministries, 2001-2006), host of Theology Unplugged, and primary blogger here at Parchment and Pen. But, most importantly, husband to a beautiful wife and father to four awesome children. Michael is available for speaking engagements. Join his Patreon and support his ministry

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