Lament is a passionate expression of sorrow that involves deep mourning for a disappointment or a loss. Typically when we hear the word lament, our minds go to grieving a death, but the lament we all feel right now is far broader than that.
From early 2020 until now, we have been bombarded by reasons for sadness and disappointment. Covid, lost lives, fires burning up our community, lost dreams, lost school years, financial loss, loss of hope in our nation or fellow citizens, loss of friendships, sorrow over the division around us, and even sorrow over some of our responses.
All of us can look back over these months and see how the tide of grief rose as death, division, disappointment, disillusionment, and disconnection increased around our lives, church, and community.
Kate and I believe that God is inviting our community into a season of LAMENT, not by minimizing or managing our pain, but by showing up within a community holding space for all the collective and individual pain we are carrying.
Grief and loss are here to stay. We cannot reject it from our story or reroute our story around it. To heal will require letting down our guard, letting out our pain, and letting others see us. We have to face this sorrow, loss, and sadness – not just because we’ve lost a brother, but because of all that we have been walking through the last eighteen months.
If we don’t invite lament, grief, and Godly sorrow in and teach people how to walk in it, how can we ever move forward into what’s “next” with any zeal, or even more vital, with any unity?
We do not want to be a community hindered by unhealed grief because we never took the time to acknowledge and face it.
Kate and I know that the only way forward is through; otherwise, we will try to get back to running while bleeding from an unacknowledged and unprocessed heart wound.
We invite you into this season of lament from now until Thanksgiving. There is much to lament if we give each other space to feel loss, regardless of whether it is “major” or “minor.” We will grieve and lament the things that are hurting in our hearts and allow God to meet us in them so that when we move forward, we aren’t carrying unreconciled pain hidden under false faith.
We anticipate a powerful move of God will take place in us as we explore how to hold and create space within our church for communal and individual grief and sorrow to be expressed – as we “weep with those who weep” in a way that allows us to “live in HARMONY with one another.” (Rom. 12:15-16)