Recently as I was teaching an Old Testament Survey class I was reminded that more than 1/3 of the Psalms were classified as lament. Lament psalms are full of complaints, questions, petitions and telling it like it is to his enemies. Often the writer is telling God that he has a problem and wondering why God has not already come to his aid because the writer doesn’t think he has done anything wrong. Laments are our groanings and crying out to God in our pain as we worship Him.
Psalm 22:4 tells me to worship God with a pure heart. As I do this I am an open book before Him. I can express my deep wailings, sorrow and grief in His Holy presence. God has said He would never forsake me nor leave me. I am His child. I come as I am to worship Him. This includes my laments when I don’t have it all together nor do I make any pretense that I do. God will accept me gladly in that condition and still love me.
King David was no stranger to worshiping God with his laments. Hear him as he laments!
How long, O LORD? Will you forget me forever?
How long will you hide your face from me?
2 How long must I take counsel in my soul
and have sorrow in my heart all the day?
How long shall my enemy be exalted over me? (Psalm 13:1-2 ESV)
My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
Why are you so far from saving me, from the words of my groaning?
2 O my God, I cry by day, but you do not answer,
and by night, but I find no rest. (Psalm 22:1-2 ESV)
Let them be put to shame and dishonor
who seek after my life!
Let them be turned back and disappointed
who devise evil against me! (Psalm 35:4 ESV)
Save me, O God!
For the waters have come up to my neck.
2 I sink in deep mire,
where there is no foothold;
I have come into deep waters,
and the flood sweeps over me.
3 I am weary with my crying out;
my throat is parched.
My eyes grow dim
with waiting for my God. (Psalm 69:1-3 ESV)
In these times we are now living we have our fears, questions, mistrusts and doubts. We have been “locked in” and “locked out,” told not to get together in groups and to mistrust everyone, yet believe those who tell us to do this. Our levels of stress and unbelief are boiling over. It is time to let God in on what you are experiencing, and allow Him to give you the peace that you are seeking and no one has been able to give you. Worship God with your laments. Be encouraged! God will hear your cries for help!