This stunningly produced, profound spoken word is available for use in your churches and communities

Lament is a cry of protest and loss, expressing the anxiety and grief brought about by the pandemic, as well as expressing the hope found in the Christian faith. It closes with some raw and real verses from the Bible’s book of Lamentations offering a firm foundation on which to stand in the storm.

This freely available film is a moment to stop and grieve all that is past, walk slowly and reflect on the last year before looking ahead with hope. In the video, Knox references a biblical refrain used to express grief, How long, O Lord?” to acknowledge the frustration, pain and unrest, both personal and public, surrounding COVID-19, experienced by many in the church and wider society.

Lament

When rumours of a virus turn to evening government updates…
When headlines move to daily news of fresh infection growth rates…
When schools are closed, then holidays postponed. Everyone is asking, Who has been furloughed?”
A slight change of plans, just wash your hands, It’s like the flu, remember?”
Let’s stay at home, do PE with Joe, it’ll be over by September.
How long, O Lord?

When streets resemble ghost towns at peak lockdown regulation…
When we crave a crowd, we cry out for connection from full-blown isolation…
When millions search for online church with new-found innovation…
Everything is online but getting loo roll is a hassle. And trust in power is eroded by trips to Barnard Castle.
It all ends in tiers; there’s no quick fix. When you’re a table of seven but there’s a rule of six.
How long, O Lord?

When our dreams are dashed, ambitions strangled, our Christmas plans destroyed…
When a righteous anger rises at the murder of George Floyd…
When families are asked to grieve behind masks at graves of treasured loved ones passed…
Life is in limbo, we are stuck in between, it’s herd immunity or miracle vaccine.
2020 short-changed by COVID-19, and children aren’t getting the food that they need.
With ever-growing numbers of the daily deaths presented…
When this is the new normal… When what life was like lamented…
Will people stop using the word unprecedented?!
We are Zoomed’ out, home-schooled out – restrictions extended.
And those we love die, unattended.

I have been deprived of peace.
I have forgotten what prosperity is.
So, I say my splendour is gone and all that I had hoped from the Lord.
My soul is downcast within me.

Yet, this I call to mind and therefore I have hope:
Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail.
They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.”

By Phil Knox

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