It’s also not a step by step, 5 year plan to gradually eliminate suffering and become happy all the time. The scripture offers no formulas.
The scripture shows us that when life is hard and suffering is present, God shows up. God enters into our suffering. Throughout the whole Bible the suffering is present and where the suffering is, God is.
Heartbreak allows us to be vulnerable to grace, and to recognize dimensions of God and certain depths of ourselves.
Lamentations is an Old Testament book. You should read a portion of it this week. It’s basically a funeral service for the death of city.
Lamentations is also an acrostic poem. An acrostic is like when you write your name long ways down a paper and then start a line of a poem with those letters. So like NICHOLE would be….
C ool (you get the hint)
This extremely creative book of the Bible is an acrostic poem of the Hebrew alphabet. Most of the time things were written in acrostics so you could memorize them easier. In this case, it has another meaning. Lamentations was all about suffering. The book covers all the ground, every detail that comes into consideration with suffering/heartbreak. It patiently combs through every emotion, every feeling.
Lamentations suggests there is a context to heartbreak. That the pain of heartbreak has boundaries. It’s bearable because it’s handled by a bigger God. The acrostic poem communicates you may be at A, but there is a Z. The tears will flow, but they will also cease.
As if to say, if there is a beginning to evil/heartbreak, there is also an end.
Suffering must be taken seriously and worked through and processed and talked about. But at some point, Finally, enough is enough. Evil is not inexhaustible. It is not infinite. It’s not worthy of a lifetime of attention.
Any serious discomfort, illness, hurt, heartbreak seems as if, at the time, it will go on forever, getting worse and worse. But it doesn’t. There is healing and heartbreak does end.
The scripture says, joy comes in the morning (psalm 30:5). We don’t know when the morning is coming, but we know it is COMING. Lamentations testifies to that there is a process to the suffering, and the process includes an end.