I don’t know about you, but when I was in middle school, I really enjoyed a good cry. I kept a diary–you know the kind, with the lock and key (like that could keep anybody out), in which, to be honest, exactly nobody in this world would want to read the ramblings of my twelve-year-old self, about boys who didn’t ask me to roller skate and such. I have to laugh, knowing there’s a tissue in my old diary–a tissue I cried into for some heart-wrenching, world-ending reason. I apparently thought this souvenir of my adolescent agony was worth preserving for future generations.
But as time has passed, I–and I don’t think I’m alone here–I have grown much less inclined to let my angst show. And my twelve-year-old self was probably a lot healthier for having let my emotions escape my body somehow.
Celebration certainly isn’t wrong, says Mark Vroegop, a pastor in Indianapolis, but with a consistent absence of lament, it’s incomplete.
In other words, lament needs expression. And that can happen in a number of ways.
Listen in for permission and even encouragement to let it all out.
Bowler, Kate and Jessica Richie. “A Prayer for Finding Joy in Sorrow.” Good Enough: 40ish Devotionals for a Life of Imperfection. Convergent Books, 2022.
John, Elton and Bernie Taupin. Sad Songs (They Say So Much), 1984.
Roose, Barbara. “Do You Need to Have an Emotional Funeral?” September 13, 2021. https://barbroose.com/do-you-need-to-have-an-emotional-funeral/
Vroegop, Mark. “The Danger of Neglecting Lament in the Local Church.” Crossway, July 14, 2019. https://www.crossway.org/articles/the-danger-of-neglecting-lament-in-the-local-church/