“Our commonest expedient is to call it beauty and behave as if that had settled the matter. Wordsworth’s expedient was to identify it with certain moments in his own past. But all this is a cheat. If Wordsworth had gone back to those moments in the past, he would not have found the thing itself, but only the reminder of it; what he remembered would turn out to be itself a remembering. The books or the music in which we thought the beauty was located will betray us if we trust to them; it was not in them, it only came through them, and what came through them was longing. These things—the beauty, the memory of our own past—are good images of what we really desire; but if they are mistaken for the thing itself they turn into dumb idols, breaking the hearts of their worshipers. For they are not the thing itself; they are only the scent of a flower we have not found, the echo of a tune we have not heard, news from a country we have never yet visited.” —C.S. Lewis, The Weight of Glory
In what ways do you feel “homeless?” What longings do you have? How is God your dwelling place?
How does your heart respond to the Psalm’s reminder that we are temporary, that death is inevitable? How does Jesus tasting death for us change your heart’s response?
Which of the 6 prayers in Vv. 12-17 stand out to you the most? Why? How will you pray each of those this coming week?
In the kingdom, we receive comfort in a very different way than we’re taught to in American culture. We receive comfort not by, on the one hand, whining in our sense of entitlement or, on the other hand, pretending as though we’re happy. We are comforted when we see our sin, our brokenness, our desperate circumstances, and we grieve, we weep, we cry out for deliverance. —Russell Moore—
Four Parts of Lament (Mark Vroegop)
Turning to God
Bringing your complaint
Choosing to trust
Until Jesus returns, the world will be marked by tears. Children will continue to be born and their first cry will announce their arrival into a broken world. To cry is human, but to lament is Christian. —Mark Vroegop—
Table Discussion Questions:
Why do you think it is difficult for us to Lament? What is the big difference between lamenting and complaining? (Hebrews 4:16)
What are some harmful things that can happen when we always try to edit our lives (internally or externally) towards the positive?
Pray for anyone at your table who is facing a difficult circumstance right now.
Creating the space for all people to ENCOUNTER the person of Jesus through the transforming study of His Word, EXPERIENCE the love of Jesus through the love of His people, and ENGAGE the work of Jesus through missional discipleship.