Cultural Encounters: A Journal For The Theology Of Culture Volume 11 Number 1 (Winter 2015) - Page 63

VOLUME 11, NUMBER 1 A JOURNAL FOR THE THEOLOGY OF CULTURE line of pain is traced in patient detail.”54 Here, Walter Brueggemann’s comments on the lament psalms are equally fitting for Lamentations. Everything properly belongs in the conversation of the heart. To withhold parts of life from that conversation is in fact to withhold part of life from the sovereignty of God. . . . [E]verything must be brought to speech, and everything brought to speech must be addressed to God, who is the final reference for all of life.55 3. Lament leads to greater faith in the steadfast love of Yahweh, and this increased faith leads to further lament. Rather than ending with his climactic declaration of trust in Lamentations 3, the writer’s memory of Yahweh’s faithfulness and mercy (3:21) bolsters his faith to further express his agony and cry for vindication. The Therapeutic Benefit of Lament for Trauma Victims Marva J. Dawn and Walter Brueggemann have argued that “if religious communities are to be authentic, they must incorporate lament within their worship services.”56 This is certainly accurate. Yet, the aim of this study is to present lament as a resource that goes beyond the simple authenticating of human experience. Biblical lament expressed in corporate worship is uniquely fitted to provide therapeutic benefit for trauma victims. When comparing the literature of trauma therapy with both commentary on biblical laments and works written for pastors and counselors who minister to victims of interpersonal trauma, the therapeutic benefit of lament nascent in the biblical texts becomes increasingly visible. 54. Ibid., 124. Peterson notes that the acrostic form also “puts limits upon the repetitions . . . [giving] a context to the suffering which has boundaries” (122). 55. Walter Brueggemann, The Message of the Psalms: A Theological Commentary (Minneapolis, MN: Augsburg, 1984), 52. 56. Kimberly N. Snow et al., “Resolving Anger toward God: Lament as an Avenue toward Attachment,” Journal of Psychology & Theology 39, no. 2 (2011): 133. 62