Friday, October 2, 2020
"They shall call the farmers to mourning, and those skilled in lamentation to wailing…" - Amos 5:10-17
Did you know that back in the days of the prophet Amos they had professional mourners you could hire to come and mourn for your loved one after they died? Can you imagine? What would it be like to be of those “skilled in lamentation?”
Some of you already know. Some of you have had loss upon loss happen in short periods of time. Some of you have had tragedy befall upon you in droves seemingly without end. Some of you know far too well the meaning of “When it rains, it pours.” You’ve become skilled in lamentation.
To a profound degree, all of us around the world have become skilled in lamentation through this pandemic. On a spectrum, everyone has lost something through this. At the extreme end of the spectrum, people have lost loved ones. Others have lost jobs and businesses. Many are experiencing the grief and loss of being able to see loved ones or being unable to go where they want to go and do what they want to do. From the most heartbreaking loss to the inconveniences of how our world has changed, we’ve all become skilled in lamentation over these past months.
That can be a source of great strength for us, too. We can look at one another without saying a word and know that we’re all in the same boat and offer comfort. We can empathize, we can support, we can commiserate, we can be frustrated and sad, and we can offer hope for the better times yet ahead of us.
Being skilled in lamentation is nothing anyone ever wants, yet it brings with it the ability to gain new strength and offer new hope.
God of Comfort, as we all become skilled in our lamentations, offer us also the hope and the strength to become skilled in our hope as well.