Like me, you have likely been overwhelmed by recent news from Kamloops. It is hard for us to comprehend the sorrow and grief concerning 215 indigenous children whose lives were cut short. I have felt so inadequate in my sorrowing for the loss of so many young, precious lives at the Kamloops Indian Residential School. Today I was reminded of the vital spiritual practice of lament.
One writer reminds us that “lament is not only for the suffering; it is for solidarity with the suffering. We love our neighbor when we allow their experience of pain to become the substance of our prayer.” READ MORE
How do we pray for the Tk'emlúps te Secwépemc First Nation? How do we pray for so many others who face deep loss and pain connected to residential school experiences? We must learn to lament. Lament is much more than sorrow, though the tears may flow. Lament follows a pattern in the psalms of bringing to God our deepest sorrow and knowing the freedom to ask why!? “Why, O Lord, do you stand far off? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble?” (Psalm 10:1...see also Psalm 22, 77)
In time, lament leads one back into a place of trust and rest in God. But as Ecclesiastes 3:4 states, this is "a time to weep...a time to mourn". So at this time, along with our friends at the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada, we seek God and we ask Him why. “We lament the devastating loss of children taken from and lost to their families and communities. We lament the atrocities committed in the name of Jesus, and yet wholly contrary to the teachings of Jesus.” READ MORE