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February 21, 2006


Amen. The denial of human pain in corporate worship is a denial of whom God has made us and a refusal to admit the state to which global and personal sinfulness has brought us.

In addition, I would add, where is our communal music of lament? Our happy songs or lyrics of promise show nothing of the pain that many among our numbers face on a daily basis. It is somewhat disingenuous of us to sing our usual hymns and choruses when what is most on our hearts is the suffering state of our souls. There are times we should allow ourselves to be overwhelmed (even musically) by the difficulties and pain of life - the psalmists certainly did. It is experiencing these moments fully that give us a context for the tenderness of Christ, the awareness of his beautiful Body, and the coming deliverance of God.

We do need music that will explore the laments. I think of Mozart's Requiem or Rachmaninov's vocalise which I often listen to.
We also need people of God to write laments in contemporary ways. Bono has been trying to do this through pop music that addresses the pains of life. Check out the song, "Peace on Earth", a bitter sweet recognition of the tension between violence and a coming kingdom -- http://www.u2.com/music/lyrics.php?song=133&list=p.
We need new laments that reflect what is happening in our world (global and local) today.

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Tim Neufeld

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