Psalms of Lament is a heartbreakingly beautiful collection of poetry. Weems alarmingly yet assuringly gets right down to business in her Preface: This book is not for everyone. It is for those who weep and for those who weep with those who weep. It is for those whose souls struggle with the dailiness of faithkeeping … Continue reading
I wondered tonight whether this week’s Greek Isaiah readings might have something to say to the recent school shooting in Connecticut. Indeed, here is Isaiah 2:17-19 (my translation from the Greek): Then every person will be brought low, and the haughtiness of humanity will collapse, and the Lord alone will be exalted in that day. … Continue reading
Psalm 46, a Psalm for tragedies and disasters, reads: God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging. There is a river whose streams make glad the city of … Continue reading
Jesus wept, and he weeps again today, with the horrible news of another school shooting in Newton, CT. From the New York Times: A gunman killed 26 people, 20 of them children between the ages of 5 and 10, in a shooting on Friday morning at an elementary school in Newtown, Conn., about 65 miles … Continue reading
Leslie C. Allen’s Liturgy of Grief is under $5 this month in ebook form. It’s here on Amazon ($4.99) and here on CBD ($3.99). It’s a good deal for a great “pastoral commentary” on Lamentations. I reviewed the book this summer, as well as interviewed the author.
I have written a book review that is slated to be published in an upcoming issue of Bible Study Magazine. You can see what Bible Study Magazine looks like by flipping through this past issue. The book I review is Lamentations and the Song of Songs, by Harvey Cox and Stephanie Paulsell. It’s the newest edition of Westminster … Continue reading
We’re afraid of other people’s pain. Like Job’s friends, we’re afraid when we don’t have answers. Job doesn’t get any answers for his sufferings, but he gets God. –Michael Card, from this great article on Biblical lament in worship. He’s got an album called The Hidden Face of God, which you can hear at Grooveshark for … Continue reading
Doran Stambaugh, formerly of the Chicagoland band w a t e r w o r k s , has written a song, “I Don’t Understand,” as a response to the mass shooting at the Dark Knight screening a week and a half ago. This is a good lament.
Not long ago I reviewed Leslie C. Allen’s Liturgy of Grief: A Pastoral Commentary on Lamentations. The book gently yet steadily coaches the reader in processing grief, expositing and drawing on the rich Biblical tradition of lament. I interviewed Dr. Allen this week. You write, “Contemporary Western culture provides little space for grief.” Why do you think … Continue reading
Yesterday I posted a prayer of lament for the victims and families of victims of the shooting at the Dark Knight showing in Aurora, Colorado the other day. Here is another lament prayer, compiled by Laurence Hull Stookey from a collection of Scriptures. Christians do, after all, have a rich Biblical tradition from which to draw … Continue reading