Lament to Joy

“Weeping may linger for the night, but joy comes in the morning” (Psalm 50:5b)

In the past six to seven months, I have been intentional about making sure these posts aren’t, “Hey, I know things are bad. But let’s all be happy anyway.”

You see, that’s not real. Sometimes crappy things happen and they feel crap. Sometimes the only response is weeping and mourning. Sometimes it is good to complain and whine.

That’s not only a psychological belief. This is quite biblical. Out of the 150 psalms more than a third of them are psalms of lament. Lamenting is necessary because life throws us so many lamentable circumstances. It would be absurd to tell someone who has lost a loved one, someone who has just been diagnosed with an incurable disease, someone who has just lost their job to be happy.

That’s absurd.

But here’s what we all need to know about lament. Lamenting is only the first step in the process of becoming healthy and whole. We must not stop at lament because if we stop at lament, that’s all you get. Lamenting is necessary to acknowledge the pain in our lives so that we can move on.

And that’s the thing, lament can’t help us move on. Only faith and hope in a good and sovereign God can do that. Lament is necessary to get the load off, to get everything off our chest. But, once we’ve done that, we still need to live and we must live well. And the only way to do that is to find our joy in a God who is good and a God who is sovereign.

I told you that more than a third of the psalms are psalms of lament. But did you know, that almost every one of the psalms of lament ends with praise? You see, that’s the life cycle of the person of faith.

So it’s okay to lament these days. They have been hard days. But once you’ve gotten that off your chest, turn your eyes and your faith upon the One who is good and the One who is sovereign.

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