The Language of Lament

With me I’m most dishonest
When my suffering I deny
“Everything’s going fine”
Is more often just a lie.

God didn’t say life’d be easy,
He said it would be hard
But don’t forget He also said
He’d be there to walk along.

Lament is like a 3 leg stool
It’s legs faith, hope and love
All 3 of them are needed
For us to rise above.

But it begins when we are honest
About the suffering life has brought
When we admit that we are broken
Half the battle has been fought.

God understands our anger,
but it’s not a license to sin
God knows life brings much sorrow
Admitting it helps our healing begin.

Even Jesus Christ our Savior
Lamented on the cross at Calvary
When alone with all man’s sorrows
Cried out, “Why have You forsaken Me”.

Bad things really do happen
To good people all the time
And the reasons hard to swallow
Pat answers numb the mind.

Lament is healing’s language
Used by suffering when it wails
Expressing how much it’s hurting
With the frustrations life entails.

Lamenting’s not for cowards,
Being honest with how we feel
Takes a different kind of courage
The kind of courage that is real.

But there’s power in lamenting
That’s hard to comprehend
But admitting the pain we’re feeling
Allows God to enter in.

Though His answers often different
Than what we thought it be
In the end we have to trust Him,
For He is God, not me.

Recall how Job lamented,
That life no longer mattered
And regretted being born
In a world where dreams are shattered.

But God commended Job
Though Job challenged Him a lot;
When he demanded God debate him,
He got his thinking turned about.

Jesus was gentle with lamenters
God’s word shows it all the time
He granted what they asked Him
And sent them away restored and fine.

Lamenting helps the sufferer
But also those that view the grief
Man is not an island
We’re blessed watching grief released.

Do we praise God in the good times
And the bad times moan laments?
It’s when you stand them both together
That life seems to make most sense.

So lament is more than venting
It’s honestly facing all of life
And knowing the God of wonders
Will bless His children through their strife

Hope changes how we suffer
Only God is in control;
Praise Him when He’s holding us
Even when we doubt it most.

For in the end He’s high above it
And somehow uses it for good,
But good starts with being honest
And our suffering understood!

And so we must accept it,
God’s not surprised by anything
As we accept what life delivers
And let Him know we trust in Him.

Even in the face of evil
When the bad guys seem to win
Knowing God will bless us through it
Allows the healing to begin.

God loves us unconditionally
That’s what true loves all about
Lamenting helps us see that
It’s the kind God wants from us!

Just as life seems most important
As we stand at death’s dark door,
Lament helps us to fathom
God’s sovereignty and more.

It’s as though life seems much clearer
Juxtaposing black and white,
God’s sovereignty comes full circle
Turning darkness into light.

Mason Swinney

Please, all rights reserved. Contact me for use of any portion of it. Thank you.


About menmourningmoments

I'm happily married, the Father of 2 sons and 2 daughters and 4 beautiful grandchildren. Death is all around us but somehow we've managed to distance ourselves from it. Men, Mourning, Moments is about how the death of my son awakened me to life & the desire to seize every moment as though it were my last. It's about making sense of life in the good times and bad and allowing GOD to carry me and teach me through the hard times in life.
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2 Responses to The Language of Lament

  1. Candy Konkler says:

    this goes right along with the ID series Kyle is preaching and the 10 week Bible study I just completed. I think God is trying to get our attention and share some pretty important info.


    • Right on Candy. Unfortunately though there’s much lamenting in the Bible there’s not much of it preached from most pulpits in America where we’ve bought into the false idea that we have to be “positive” about everything. It’s when we give voice to the suffering that healing can really begin. Perhaps that’s why after the 9/11 attack people flocked to the churches but didn’t stay. Perhaps they didn’t want to be told that everything was going to be all right when, in fact, they knew it would never be the same and now was the time to hurt and work through our grief together and not just get on with life. Or worse, they heard nothing about it but an aside comment or two. Just maybe people thought if the church didn’t know when people were hurting, how could they answer life’s bigger questions. Just a thought.


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