Spiritual Practices in Suffering

"... our hearts have seasons, and the longest of them, if not in duration then in intensity, is winter. There's no preventing it, though there are ways to steward it."

-Mark Buchanan

by Michelle DeRusha

"...the shrub you left behind was stripped bare – ugly and pathetic looking. That’s pruning. That’s what God’s been doing in my life this season, and I don’t love it. I feel stripped bare, ugly and pathetic. “What’s left?” I bemoan to God. “What are you leaving me?” It’s easy to forget when you’re in the middle of it that spring always follows winter."

by Jan Johnson

"All of my life people have assured me, “All things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose” (Rom. 8:28). I’ve wanted to believe that, but a classic dysfunctional family upbringing makes me balk a little at everything working out for good."

by Jan Johnson

"God models for us a divine sort of mourning that we don’t naturally embrace but may move toward with the Spirit’s help."

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LAMENT

by Elizabeth Lewis Hall

lament is an interpersonal process. It’s a turning to God. It’s not a lonely catharsis. We’re allowed to bring our suffering to God. We can actually take initiative in the relationship with God and be responded to.

by Diana Gruver

"Lament psalms teach us to bring our raw emotion and desires to God—with no filter or polishing—and how to release those emotions and desires to His care."

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