Lamenting in the face of grief and loss is therapeutic. It is also theologically sound.
So why then don’t we lament? Or at least, why don’t we lament well?
Not wanting to let the side down, we may buy into a stoical or even triumphant brand of Christianity. We forget to be human. Or we can confuse lamenting with its forbidden cousin, grumbling, which crosses a line.
The author guides us skilfully through the Bible’s teaching, introducing us to key characters whom we can emulate. He shares from his own wealth of personal and pastoral experience. He sits beside us as we work through our tears to a place of confidence and trust.
This life-giving book will meet you where you are in an experience which is no less raw and painful for being universal. Here you find empathy and deep comfort. You are held securely in your Heavenly Father’s warm embrace.
“Pastorally sensitive and amply rooted in Scripture, it leads us through the ‘turning, telling, praying, and trusting’ of lament. The author handles the mystery of suffering with care, leading us to Christ, who bore ultimate darkness for us. Some dos and don’ts towards the end of the book represent seasoned wisdom from decades of local church ministry. Questions at the conclusion of chapters not only invite personal reflection but make this a resource that can usefully be read one-to-one or in a small group."
Andrew Collins, Certificate Course Director, Biblical Counselling UK, and former consultant psychiatrist
“Paul Mallard writes honestly and movingly from his own personal experiences of profound and inexplicable loss. With gentle wisdom, heartfelt sensitivity, and deep biblical knowledge, he helps us to see the importance of lament in the Christian life. This is a much-needed book for all those who grieve and those who seek to accompany and support them on their journey.”
John Wyatt, emeritus professor of neonatal paediatrics at University College London and author of Dying Well and The Final Lap
“In Learning to Lament, we hear the gentle voice of a pastor sharing truths he himself has learned from the Good Shepherd, our Lord Jesus. Pastorally wise, biblically faithful, and full of helpful illustrations, written in a style accessible to all, this book helps us face up to the unavoidable reality of the many types of painful losses that cause deep grief. Having read Learning to Lament, I want my friends to read it too!”
Jonathan Prime, Director for Pastoral Support at the Fellowship of Independent Evangelical Churches
“The Christian life is full of joy, but it is also a journey through suffering. Learning to Lament gives the reader permission to grieve, to cry out to the Lord in our pain, and to reach out to our brothers and sisters in the church for comfort. This short book is full of truths that are good for the soul. Read it and find hope. Learn to lament and find comfort in the arms of our good and sovereign Lord.”
Keri Folmar, pastor’s wife in Dubai, co-host of Priscilla Talk Podcast, author of The Good Portion: Scripture, How Can Women Thrive in the Local Church? and Delighting in the Word Bible Studies