Week 1, Day 3: What Lament Looks Like

Don’t Waste Your Trials


“Then Job arose and tore his robe and shaved his head and fell on the ground and worshiped. And he said, ‘Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.’”
Job 1:20-21

Healthy lament leads to worship.

The news was bad. My mom’s cancer was back and the prognosis was four years left to live with daily chemotherapy. Tears blurred my vision as I drove down the freeway to work the morning after I had received the news. I was trying to process it all. I wasn’t angry at God, but I was deeply sad. I was grieving. I pressed play hoping a worship CD would help my mind to focus on the Lord.

You give and take away.
My heart will choose to say,
Lord blessed be your name.

The words pierced my heart and my tears turned to weeping, and my weeping turned to praise as I pondered these truths and sang along at the top of my lungs:

Blessed be the name of the Lord,
Blessed be your glorious name.

When Job said those words, a messenger had just delivered the news that a great wind had struck his son’s home and all of his children had died in the disaster. The raw, honest, and first response of Job was to tear his clothes, shave his head (signs of lament), fall to the ground, and worship.

We can learn from his example — healthy lament leads to worship. Every difficulty we experience in life, big or small, is an opportunity to worship. Even if that worship comes through tears, we can recognize the sovereignty of God in the midst of intensely painful circumstances and can choose to say, “Blessed be the name of the Lord.”


Application Questions

  • In what ways are we tempted to respond to trials wrongly?
  • Have you ever “wasted” a trial by failing to turn it into worship? 
  • Who is someone you know who has turned a personal difficulty in worship?
  • What truths can help us worship in the midst of mourning?

Prayer

Lord, may your sovereignty be a comforting truth in our darkest hour. May we accept both blessing and difficulty with worship because you are worthy of praise! Remind us now of Christ, who experienced the ultimate suffering in a final act of worship: yielding up his spirit.


Memory Verse:

“I will bless the Lord at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth.” Psalm 34:1