Esther Fleece | January 26, 2017
Lament is not a common word in our churches today, though it is a language woven throughout Scripture. A lament is a passionate expression of our pain that God meets us in. It’s real talk with God about the ways we are hurting. It’s an honest prayer to God about where we are, not where we are pretending to be. A lament may take the form of a plea for help in a time of distress or a protest over injustice.
What a kind God we have, who has warned us that pain in this life will come and has given us a language to relate to Him in the midst of it.
We are not abandoned in a lament; we are being refined, renewed, and held. When we begin to understand God as a God who weeps, we begin to see Him as someone safe to run to in the midst of our pain.
In this 3-day track, Esther guides us into a fuller understanding not only of what lament is, but how it is biblically modeled and leads us to discover God and ourselves in a deeper way.
Throughout Scripture, we see that God Himself is deeply emotional; each member of the Trinity has experienced grief.
God the Father grieves: “Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. The Lord was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart.”*
The Holy Spirit grieves: “Yet they rebelled and grieved his Holy Spirit.”
Jesus grieves: He grieved over His friend Lazarus’s death, even though He knew Lazarus would live again. The shortest verse in the Bible is rich with theological insight: “Jesus wept.” In just two words, we are given a glimpse into the depth of emotion of our Savior—who entered into our suffering to be with us out of incredible love.
If we don’t allow painful emotions to surface, then we are setting expectations for ourselves that even God cannot meet. Nobody laments more than God Himself. And we are called to be like Him.