“Every lament is an Exodus journey. The lamenter suffers, the lamenter expresses that suffering to God; God responds with compassion; God hears, sees, delivers. In time the lamenter is transformed and puts his or her hope again in God.”- Aubrey Sampson
“God heard their groaning and remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac and with Jacob. So God look on the Israelites and was concerned about them.”- Exodus 2:24-25 (NIV)
As Aubrey Sampson continues Chapter 2 of The Louder Song, she covers the Exodus and Protest Laments.
2. Exodus Lament. In Exodus 2:25, we read that God showed concern about the Israelites. The Hebrew word for concerned, yada, describes God’s intimate knowing of His people. Thus, Aubrey notes, our laments stir God’s heart. Certainly, this isn’t based on anything we do or say. Therefore, Aubrey explains:
“God’s love doesn’t advance or retreat based on our efforts or work or words. But our laments, our crying out and pain, certainly appeal to God’s parental heart, his abundant love, the riches of his mercy and grace.”
Finally, your lament changes as God changes you.
3. Protest Lament. While lament expresses grief for our own pain, it also serves as a communal and public cry for justice. Even more, Protest Laments cry out to God. For He’s the only Judge capable of making a difference and delivering a just ruling. Furthermore, Protest Laments, the author notes:
- express outrage, sorrow, and repentance for communal sin
- give voice to evil, inequitable, and unjust power structures
- demand a redistribution of that power
Above all, Aubrey asserts, Protest Laments function as one of the most powerful tools for ministry and evangelism. Because laments take suffering seriously, they give dignity to sufferers on the margins of society. In the process, we earn relational credit with the hurting. We share the love of Jesus.
Today’s question: How would you describe your Exodus journey following your ministry downsizing or position loss? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “Holy sorrow – the godly are weeping doves”