Sermon Series – 2 May to 6 June , 2021
Practicing the Art of Lament
Last year, during the COVID-19 lock-down, we began our 2020 series on Lament. It was profound timing.
As the world reeled from the pandemic, we brought a prayer of lament for the world in all its brokenness, sinfulness, suffering and pain. This year we return to this wonderful biblical form of prayer, a gift of God for difficult, sad and painful moments.
READ MORE ABOUT THE SERIES BELOW
|SERMON TITLE and links to WATCH or LISTEN||PREACHING|
|2 May||Romans 12:9-21||A Time for Lament: YouTube service; Audio + Q&A||Stephen Baxter|
|9 May||Psalm 139:1-17||A Lament for the Past: YouTube Service; Audio + Q&A||Michael Henderson|
|16 May||Genesis 3:17-24||A Lament for the Land YouTube Service; Audio + Q&A||Liam Conway|
|23 May||A Lament for the Disadvantaged|
|30 May||A Lament for Loss|
Lament is the cry of heart for when we are hurting, confused and pain filled. The Bible is full of examples of God’s people bringing their lament to God. It is an act of faith where, though we are tempted to turn our back on God because of anger and disenchantment, we address our complaint to him.
But there is more to lament.
In his letter to the small church in Rome, Paul encouraged them to “Rejoice with those who rejoice and mourn with those who mourn” (12:15). To rejoice with others is one thing, to mourn with them another. Notice, Paul doesn’t say, “Give advice to them,” or “remind them they should claim victory in the resurrection.” Rather, Paul expects a mourning with, and alongside, others.
Rejoice with those who rejoice and mourn with those who mournRomans 12:15
This is perhaps something we are not so good at. Such mourning does not try to change things, all it does is share in the burden of sorrows. Nothing is fixed, nothing is solved, except one profound thing — they are no longer alone.
As we dig deeper in understanding and praying prayers of lament this year, our focus will be on what it means for us as a church, and as individuals, to mourn with those who mourn. After all, this is what the Creator did as he entered his creation as a human being, entered into our suffering and pain, and mourned with us.
Such a lament is not a cause of despair, but of hope.
Such a lament is not a cause of despair, but of hope. As we mourn with others in hope, the God of hope is with us and working through that hope, may enter the heart of the other, and into the whole community.
Let’s look forward to what God has in store for us in this year’s exploration of lament.