Monday, November 3, 2014

Anguish, lament, and the human soul...

Week 45:

Lamentations 3:17-26 17 I have been deprived of peace; I have forgotten what prosperity is.  18 So I say, “My splendor is gone and all that I had hoped from the Lord.”  19 I remember my affliction and my wandering, the bitterness and the gall.  20 I well remember them, and my soul is downcast within me.  21 Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope:  22 Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.  23 They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.  24 I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion;
therefore I will wait for him.”  25 The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him; 26 it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord.

A few years ago, I was introduced to a video on anguish.  This video was a compilation of excerpts from a sermon by David Wilkerson titled A Call to Anguish.  It had such a powerful impact on me that I was moved emotionally.  That is saying a lot because at that time, I had become quite jaded and numb.  At that time, the Holy Spirit made a call to me, through this video, to bring my numb life to God.  I had already been seeking to hear God and follow His leading.  But, that day began the journey of transformation I am now on.

I have watched this video several times and have listened to the words closely.  In the moment I experienced this video and through some of my experiences in my soul work through The Crucible Project, God has helped me unlock parts of my heart and soul that have been covered for years.  It started in that place of anguish.

Anguish and lament is very much a part of the human soul.  As painful as they can be, anguish and lament actually unlocks our hearts for God’s love, mercy and grace to pour in.  I think the mistake that I made for so long was to believe that God causes or in some way encourages anguish and pain in my life.  When I believed that, I envisioned God as far away and disinterested in me.  When He was interested, it was only to correct me.  That is not the true God and that is not how anguish works.

Anguish and lament point to something not being right in my world.  I am either burdened with my sin or burdened with the results of sin around me.  I am saddened by the brokenness of the world.  When I look upon the lost souls searching the fill themselves with things other than God’s love, mercy, and grace; it pains me.  When I have pursued worldly things over God, I am left with emptiness. The only place to go is to a place of sorrow, lament and anguish.  It is in this place, where I face reality, and many times pain that I see God for who He is.  It is here that God shows me who I am.  In those moments, he replenishes my soul.

As long as I avoid my anguish…as long as I deny my anguish…as long as I hide my lament…as long as I repress my sadness, I keep god at a distance.  He is ready for me to lay my aguish and lament at His feet so that he may lift me up in His time and in His ways to fulfill His purpose for me.


1.      What comes up for you when you hear the words anguish and lament?
2.      Watch the video (Click on A Call to Anguish).  What is your reaction?
3.      Where has God helped you in your anguish?
4.      Have you denied or hidden your anguish?  Where was God for you in that time?
5.      This week, look around your world and see what needs to be mourned.  Allow God to open your eyes so that you may lay your anguish and lament at His feet.
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