Friday, November 9, 2012

Thursday's Therapy A Call to Lament - Part One ~Angie and Tommy Prince

A grief stricken American infantryman whose buddy has been killed in action is comforted by another soldier. ~War in Korea, August 28, 1950

Thursday's Therapy

A Call to Lament

Part One

~Angie and Tommy Prince

In reviewing some Facebook opinions last night, I am appalled at some of the misconstrued views of God that can be summarized by 

"Well, if such-and-such happened, then it must have been God's will!"

Oh my! What a desolation of God's true character. Do these commenters not realize there is MUCH that happens on this earth that is OBVIOUSLY NOT God's will??? Consider, what would I say to my clients whose fathers and mothers decimated them from within the womb to their first day on earth, throughout their toddlerhood, and on into their teens? That just because such horror happened in their lives, that THIS was God's will for them? GOD FORBID! ABSOLUTELY NOT! 

What has happened to our theology that it has become so cheapened as to falsely characterize the very TRUE nature of God so as to explain away grave happenings for the truly mistreated? God is JUST. God is HOLY. God is LOVE. God hates injustice. He hates unholiness. He hates when His beloved creatures are being so grossly abused. 

To seemingly satisfy a simplistic need for a sense of "control," the modernized believer insanely declares, "Well if 'x' happened, then it must have been God's will." NO! 

Tommy and I trained not only to be psychological therapists, but psychotherapists grounded in the Word of God, not just knowledgeable about our manmade ideas of psychology. Therefore, we want to dedicate the next few weeks to a rededication to A Call to Lament that (we think) correctly aligns with God's true, loving nature that is truly appalled with the things that happen that are not according to His divine ordering. He Himself has declared that SATAN is the prince of this world; therefore there will be many things transpiring that are NOT of God's intended design. We are called to have discernment of what those things are, and DECRY those things, not blindly accept them as if they were of God's true will.

We live in a FALLEN world. To not recognize that is a gross injustice to the very CHARACTER AND TRUE NATURE of our God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.

We start tonight with words from grieving father Nicholas Wolterstorff, a philosopher at Yale Divinity School by trade, 12 years after the loss of his 25-year-old son Eric who died in a mountain-climbing accident in Austria.

"The wound is no longer raw. But it has not disappeared. That is as it should be. If he was worth loving, he is worth grieving over. Grief is existential testimony to the worth of the one loved. That worth abides. 

"So I own my grief. I do not try to put it behind me, to get over it, to forget it. I do not try to dis-own it. If someone asks, 'Who are you, tell me about yourself," I say, not immediately, but shortly, 'I am one who lost a son.' That loss determines my identity; not all of my identity, but much of it. It belongs within my story. I struggle indeed to go beyond merely owning my grief toward owning it redemptively. But I will not and cannot disown it. I shall remember Eric. Lament is part of life. 

"A friend told me that he had given copies of Lament to all of his children. 'Why did you do that?' I asked. 'Because it is a love-song,' he said. That took me aback. But Yes, it is a love-song. Every lament is a love-song. 

"Will love-songs one day no longer be laments?"

~Nicholas Wolterstorff, Lament for a Son 
(1987, William E. Eerdmans Publishing Co.)

Next week, we will continue to hear from Nicholas Wolterstorff on the topic,

If God is Good and Sovereign, Why Lament?

an essay by Nicholas Wolterstorff, found in Hearing the Call: Liturgy, Justice, Church and the World (Collection, 2011 Nicholas Wolterstorff, published in 2011 by William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company). Stay tuned!

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