20 March 2009

I Found my Mission!

I was looking over Living Proof Ministries' website, where The Most Excellent Teacher, Beth Moore 'resides.' Their blog has the most striking entry for March 12th. I am somewhat dumbstruck; it perfectly expresses how I feel about this blog I've started. I said I wanted to make monuments to what I've learned from God these past four years... I've copied this lengthy quote over from the LPM blog. It's taken from an article published in Calvin Theological Journal 2001 by a man named Nicholas Wolterstorff. It is entitled "If God is Good and Sovereign, Why Lament?" He states the goal of my heart so clearly:

To use Wolterstorff’s explanation “The lament, at its heart, is giving voice to the suffering that accompanies deep loss, whatever that loss may be. Lament is not about suffering. Lament is not concerning suffering. Lament does not count the stages and try to identify the stage in which one finds oneself. Lament is the language of suffering, the voicing of suffering. Behind lament are tears over loss. Lament goes beyond the tears to voice the suffering. To voice suffering, one must name it- identify it. Sometimes that is difficult, even impossible. The memories are repressed so that the suffering is screened from view. Or one is aware of it, in a way, but in naming it, identifying it for what it is, would be too painful, too embarrassing. So one resists. Then, one cannot lament. One suffers without being able to lament. Lament is an achievement. Lament is more, though, than the voicing of suffering. The mere voicing of one’s suffering is complaint, not lament. Lament is a cry to God. This presupposes, of course, that lament is the action of a believer” (42-43).
"In the Bible, which we believe is God's Word, such that we find in it is what God wished to be there, there is plenty of lament, protest, anger, and baffled questions. The point we should notice (possibly to our surprise) is that it is all hurled at God, not by his enemies but by those who loved and trusted him most. It seems, indeed, that it is precisely those who have the closest relationship with God who feel most at liberty to pour out their pain and protest to God- without fear or reproach. Lament is not only allowed in the Bible; it is modeled for us in abundance. God seems to want to give us many words with which to fill in our complaint forms as to write out thank-you notes. Perhaps this is because whatever amount of lament the world causes us to express is a drop in the ocean compared to the grief in the heart of God himself at the totality of suffering that only God can comprehend” (50-51)

I don't know what I can say, seeing as I have been trying to lament and not complain for so long. I feel comforted and loved to know that I am allowed and encouraged to feel my loss and pain. I remember so clearly trying to figure out what stage of grief I was in so I could 'tell' how much longer I would be miserable. I can sort of smile at that now, but in the thick of it I was really trying to tell. I guess I am here trying to name my grief without embarrassment, to glorify the Lord who carries me through the flames. I can see the parts of me that He's melted off down there on the floor. Things are still so painful but the pain is almost a familiar weight-- I must have worked up some callouses spiritually.


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