Those kinds of losses are a part of life and usually, we can’t control them. But we can determine how we respond to them.
All of us experience loss at different points in our lives. We have lost jobs, material possessions, or our health. We have family members and friends who have passed away. Sometimes we lose a relationship that’s important to us because of a conflict or because someone moves away. Those kinds of losses are a part of life and usually, we can’t control them. But we can determine how we respond to them.
What is lament? Lament is a passionate expression of grief and sorrow— to mourn, to grieve, to beat one’s breast in anguish. A lament is not whining, complaining, griping, or grumbling. It is to say, “Woe is me!” (Micah 7:1): what misery is mine. It sums up the feeling of a grieving mother who has lost a child, or a widow or widower facing their spouse’s funeral, or a conquered nation. “Woe is me!” is only used in the most dire, grim, ruinous circumstances.
Here’s a biblical example that I like to refer to. In 2 Samuel, David and his men immediately begin the process of mourning for Saul and Jonathan. This lament represents a pivotal point in David’s life. It refers to a “bridge from life to death to life”. David had been anointed king 10 to 15 years prior to this event and he had spent a good part of that time running from Saul, who was trying to kill him. But now that Saul is dead, this lament becomes an essential transition from that part of his life to his reign as the king of Israel. David realised the need for lament and grief. Acknowledging his loss enabled David to move on with the grieving process.
Why does the Bible embrace lamenting? Because it is honest about human experience.
The Bible is not ashamed of lament. In the Psalms, 60 of the 150 are categorized as lament psalms—40%. There is one book in the Bible that is devoted to laments, and it is aptly named Lamentations. Why does the Bible embrace lamenting? Because it is honest about human experience.
If you have some issue in your life, don’t just ignore it, but take the time to lament for it. Hand it over to God and ask Him to help you recover and move on. In conclusion, I’d like to ask you: is there something you have been ignoring but that you need to lament over?
If so, I’d like to pray this with you:
Father, Thank You that You are with us in our times of need. Help us when we are hurting from the loss. Help us not to ignore the things that cause our hearts pain, but to hand them over to You. In Jesus’ name, Amen
During these difficult times as we encourage one another on our spiritual journey, I’d like to say thank you for your prayers and support. Here at CBN South Africa we have been overwhelmed by the faithfulness and support shown to us. With hundreds of individuals stepping up to support the ministry, we have been able to share the message of hope in Jesus to the nations! As we have shared vision and testimony with you, we have seen many of you step out and commit to support the work that we do on air, online and on the ground. May we take this opportunity to pause and say thank you! When faith-filled people capture the vision and run with it, chains break and lives transform through the love of God.
This article can be found in our 5th issue of Arise for 2021.