Over the last few weeks it seems the theme of our nation has been devastation. Politicians have continued to make noise causing uncertainty with foreign relations. Hurricanes have devastated our coastlines leaving countless homeless. Just this last Sunday a terrorist killed 59 people and left over 500 injured. It gets to the point where we are overwhelmed with the sorrow of this world.
We love a God who understands. We worship God who feels sorrow. We believe in a God who hears our prayers. In scripture God gives his people a mechanism to pray when life is overwhelming. This is the prayer of lament. A lament is a genre of prayer used to address God during inexplicable suffering.
- “Lamentations abandons the appearance of superhuman emotional strength—which we often commend as godly strength—and opts for open mourning instead. It gives us permission to settle down into mourning, engage with suffering, and weep. Although hope is delayed in Lamentations, grief is always directed toward God. The writer drags us through his muck and then calls out to God, “See, LORD, how distressed I am! I am in torment within, and in my heart I am disturbed, for I have been most rebellious”. He begs God to see his suffering, take part in this grief, and act in mercy.” -Aubry Smith
- All her people groan as they search for bread; they trade their treasures for food to revive their strength. “Look, O Lord, and see, for I am despised.” “Is it nothing to you, all you who pass by? Look and see if there is any sorrow like my sorrow, which was brought upon me, which the Lord inflicted on the day of his fierce anger." (Lamentations 1:11–12, ESV)
Whatever you are going through, I want to encourage you. Don’t let go of Jesus. For the Psalmist tells us: “The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.” (Psalm 34:18, ESV)