We don’t often use the term “lament.”
The word is defined as “a passionate expression of grief or sorrow.” Lamentations is a book in the Bible written by the prophet Jeremiah. Jeremiah suffered greatly as a prophet of God due to the wickedness of the Israelites of his day.
They had walked away from God, and God was allowing them to suffer the consequences of their infidelity.
In the midst of his weeping, Jeremiah writes:
Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope:
Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.
~ Lamentations 3.21-23, NIV
I’d like you to read the entire chapter leading up to this verse. The prophet is talking about his sorrow and bitterness. Then, smack-dab in the middle of the chapter in the middle of the book, he reminds himself (as well as the reader) about God’s Faithfulness. In the middle of your trials, in the middle of your prayers do you find time to offer up praise and thanks?
Lamentations 3 is a rich chapter. Anyone who is dealing with or has dealt with overwhelming sorrow will understand Jeremiah’s writing here. We can pour out our heartache to God, we can mourn for wrongs we have done and wrongs done against us; yet, like Jeremiah, we need to remember to give reverence to God and be thankful for having Him as our Lord and Father. No matter how bad things are we, as children of God, always have something to be thankful for. Always.
God’s faithfulness, constancy and love are things to be thankful for. A beautiful hymn was derived from this passage and has grown to be one of my favorites:
Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father;
There is no shadow of turning with Thee,
Thou changest not, Thy compassions they fail not,
As Thou hast been,Thou forever wilt be.
Great is Thy faithfulness!
Great is Thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord unto me!
Summer and winter and springtime and harvest,
Sun, moon, and stars in their courses above;
Join with all nature in manifold witness,
To Thy great faithfulness, mercy, and love.
Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth,
Thine own great presence to cheer and to guide;
Strength for today, and bright hope for tomorrow
Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside.
~ Thomas Chisolm
I want you to think about the passage in Lamentations and the lyrics of the song this week.
Make a list of what we can find to be thankful for even in our darkest hours. (Remember the story I shared with you last week about Betsie Ten Boom being thankful for the fleas.)
I will be doing a series of posts on this in the coming weeks in addition to our discussions on prayer. There is too much to be covered in one post!
What reminds you of God’s faithfulness? Leave a comment below and share your thoughts!
Be strong in the Lord, dear friends.
To read the next post in the series, click here.