Lament: Complain and seek
We are continuing the Roadmap to Lament. Here are the next two steps
(We are breaking down the 5 steps of the Roadmap to Lament over this series. We want to encourage you to sit with each part, along with the questions and prompts provided. We also suggest taking the time to journal your thoughts.)
Bring your complaint.
Every lament features some kind of complaint.
“How much longer must I cling to this constant grief? I’ve endured this shaking of my soul. So how much longer will my enemy have the upper hand? It’s been long enough!” (Psalm 13:2, TPT).
More than a sinful rehearsing of our anger, biblical lament humbly and honestly identifies the pain, questions, and frustrations raging in our souls. Often when we hurt, we will talk to a trusted friend, a spiritual leader, a spouse, or maybe anyone who will listen! Well-intentioned listeners encourage you to “get it off your chest…you’ll feel better.” This advice is valid, but the listener can only take you as far as they have gone themselves in the area of suffering.
Voice your complaint to God. Remember, he can handle any grievance that is on your heart.
Ask boldly for help.
Seeking God’s help while in pain is an act of faith:
“Take a good look at me, God, and answer me! Breathe your life into my spirit. Bring light to my eyes in this pitch-black darkness, or I will sleep the sleep of death. Don’t let my enemy proclaim, ‘I’ve prevailed over him’ For all my adversaries will celebrate when I fall.” (Psalm 13:3-4, TPT)
Constant sorrow can create a deadly silence as we give in to despair (“there’s no hope”) or denial (“everything’s fine”). But lament invites us to dare to hope in God’s promises as we ask for his help.
Ask the Lord for help as you journey through this time of lament, remembering that his will is always for your “better good.”
written by Major Lauren Hodgson, USA East SLD