When Jesus Weeps—The Parable of She

by hillary

When Jesus Weeps—The Parable of She

“Break her will,” they said

and broken, She

weeps silently.

But sometimes She forgets

how to weep at all . . .



The Girl-Soul sighed deeply and rubbed her eyes. Such a long road, her way, filled with pebbles and holes and scary places. I need to stop soon, whispered heart. Shoulders burned with tension. The lumpy bag of rocks She carried banged against her legs; purple bruises crept up skin. But I can’t give up now; I’m almost there!

Anticipating a grateful smile from the Giant and Grandfather, She pressed up the ancient path. Why they needed heavy rocks, She did not know, yet vowed to bring the best She could, and labored night and day, without rest, food, or water, to gather them.

But at last! The Girl-Soul mounted final peak. As the Giant came forth, a smile crossed her weary, grimy face.

“Here they are,” She sang. “I chose the good ones! I washed them in the river so they’d shine. Can I take them to Grandfather?”

The Giant grunted as he untied the sack and dumped its contents into dust. Eternity passed while he bent and studied every line, every facet. The Girl-Soul waited, dryness clutching throat. “Can I rest, then?” She asked, bones aching with weariness.

. “This is a good start,” the Giant said, and straightened, kicking the edge of the largest rock. “I will take these in. You know Grandfather will only take what I bring him. Go back down and see if you can find more of these big ones.”

“But . . .” The Girl-Soul’s heart sank, eyes watered.

Her hesitation enraged the Giant. “Grandfather needs the big, strong, heavy ones! There is no excuse for the flesh!”

Tears flowed. If only he knew how sore, how tired She felt! “Please,” She pleaded. “I will go in the morning. I’ll wake up early, before the sun. But I have not eaten in days; I am so thirsty, so tired . . .”

The Giant glared at her tiny trembling frame. “Don’t you want a place in Grandfather’s house?” he roared. “Don’t you want him to be happy with your rocks? I am teaching you to do your best, so he will be satisfied! You should thank me, yet your rebellion disgusts both me and Grandfather. Now, GO!”

He pushed her little body towards the descent.  She fell, knees catching on the pile of rocks, skin bursting open. As the Giant stood back with cold, steely eyes, the Girl-Soul shivered, sobbed, and crawled in blood and dust back into the Valley.


For women raised within fundamentalism, it is extremely difficult to recover from the brutal realization that sometimes, home is not safe.

That those whom we love most, trust most, and need most, aren’t safe.

The worst part is when we learn that God isn’t, either. At least, the god who left us wounded, angry, confused, heartbroken, and exhausted, and made us trudge over mountains, arms loaded with bags of rocks.

One thing I love about Vyckie and No Longer Quivering is her commitment to build a haven for the oppressed.

A refuge for those seeking solace.

Rest, for She.

As we are gently guided home, may we recognize truth: when the broken grieve, Jesus weeps.

Please join me in support of this crucial work.

Hillary McFarland


Quivering Daughters: When Jesus Weeps —True Stories of Women, Authoritarianism, and the Fundamentalist Life

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