9 May 2011

I'm working through this course at the moment called 'Freedom In Christ' or FIC for short. Its been really good so far, and I would definitely recommend it to someone who has just become a Christian, or has issues that they need to work through.

During one session on it, we were talking about how we handle our emotions and feelings when it comes to God. Chapter 3 of the book Lamentations was mentioned, and seeing as I have yet to read it, I thought it would be good to just read the chapter.

Just to give a little background information on Lamentations, it is a book of five poems in the Old Testament of the Bible, believed to be written by the prophet Jeremiah. The word 'lament' is another way for describing passionate grief or mourning, and in the book Jeremiah mourns for Jerusalem, which had been destroyed by Babylonian invasion (which you can read more about here).

Anyway, the main point of interest for me was the nature of Jeremiah's lament in chapter 3. It starts with doom and gloom; and no wonder, because the city has been ravaged to the ground - and Jeremiah addresses God, talking about how he feels that God has turned against him and surrounded him with bitterness, and left him in the dark (vs. 3,5 and 6). This tone continues until the eighteenth verse, when after getting all of it off his chest, Jeremiah is encouraged in the knowledge that God has already done so much for him and is continually merciful; and he proceeds to bless God's name, with the tone of the poem changing dramatically (vs. 22 and 24).

I guess what I was encouraged by the most was the fact that God is man enough to take all our winging to His face. We don't ever need to worry that we might offend Him by saying how upset or abandoned we feel. God is okay with us acknowledging our feelings to Him, He wants us to get them off our chest so that we can hand them over to Him and know that He is totally in control.

"The Lord is my portion," says my soul,
"Therefore I hope in Him!"
- Lamentations 3.24

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