Take a moment to read the entire chapter of Lamentations 1 before reading the devotional below.
We will be spending the next 5 days taking a look at the book of Lamentations as we get ready to enter the season of Lent. To read more background information about Lamentations, click here. As we read this book, most likely written by the prophet Jeremiah, we need to maintain a balance between corporate and personal application. Lamentations is an expression of communal grief, though there are ways that we can relate and understand it personally as well.
In chapter 1, I am struck by the tragic imagery of Jerusalem, in shambles after having left its glory days behind. When things are going well, it is hard to imagine what could happen to make it fall apart. And yet here we are sitting in grief with God’s people as sin has torn their world apart. Sobbing, betrayal, eerie silence, wandering, and a lack of comfort are some of the images in this chapter. While we may be tempted to do some finger pointing and blame Jerusalem for bringing this on itself, let’s sit with the pain instead. Sometimes it doesn’t matter how things went south, it just hurts that what was once so beautiful is now in ruins.
Here’s your freedom for today: it is important to grieve what has been lost. Maybe you have experienced situations that fell apart by your own doing, or maybe you’ve watched something vanish that you did everything you could to save. No matter where you place the blame, there is a grief that must be walked through in order to move forward. Healing is possible after tragedy and loss. It begins with an acknowledgement of the pain. There is no timeline for the grief process, and we all go through it in our own ways. God is with you, and he is not rushing you to feel better. Take your time, cry, wander, and feel every feeling you need to feel. Give yourself permission to not be okay for a little while.