When I was young we had a record called “The Music Machine.” it was one of my very favorites. On the record was a song titled The String Song. And today, that song has been playing through my mind. String Song (excuse the cheesiness and bad recording).
Life is full of the, unwanted, I can’t bare it much longer, why aren’t you listening to me GOD! moments. These moments are often not allowed within the tidy nature of self-preservation, church going, polite, good little boy and girl, always have faith, hold on to hope and believe in the impossible world of Christianity. And, these moments are crucial to our faith. These moments are the lament and the lament has been silenced in most modern day expressions of faith. The lament, which plays a vital role in the lives of David, Jeremiah, Amos, and dare I say Jesus… has been set aside.
BUT, the lament is necessary for our good.
This world is full of heart break, personal, societal, familial. And our heart break can quickly turn our hearts against, or numb, or silence our souls. Lament takes the honest content of our hearts and throws it at God as if He were a loved one, who we just can’t help but push against out of our deep anger, pain and grief. Lament is an act of love, it is an act of hope and it will rescue us.
I remember a movie called The Stepford Wives, I could never bring myself to watch it. The thought of someone being soulless, and lifeless and robotic is disturbing and is so dehumanizing. When we, when I, do not allow myself … ourselves… to lament we simply close the door on deep pain, grief or anger and allow it to grow in the closet and we callous over it with niceties and pleasant sayings that keep all things tied up with a bow. Those rooms calcify over time and hearts and souls become numb, lifeless and soulless… much like the wives in the movie.
I am convinced that our lament is one of the most gracious and brave and faithfilled actions we can enter into. And, I believe that it is in lament, that we stop performing, shoving aside, tidying up and washing over the ache in our hearts and welcome it, thrusting it against God and cursing at him until, like a baby who cries herself to sleep, we go limp in the arms of the one who loves us. It is in our limp state that the callouses soften, our hearts open, and our perfect little church going, believing, beautiful selves fall into the loving arms of Love Himself and life is planted.
Today, where ever you find your grief or loss or pain or suffering. Where you have unanswered prayers, impossible decisions, wounds and anger. Where the world and it’s darkness is too much to bare… stop holding yourself together and let it all out… say aloud all that you feel. Lament, with loud crashes, broken dishes, and an honest mouth. Speak what is true until your tears soften the hardened places of holding yourself together and you fall into the loving embrace of God, who is love and full of loving kindness.
Lord I believe
Help my unbelief