Crying Out to God

Reflections for contemplative living

Rachel in the Book of Jeremiah shows us how to lament, how to cry out to God. We must learn to pray about the things that deeply disturb us. The prophet Jeremiah writes of Rachel’s lamenting “voice in Ramah” that can only weep at the world’s suffering. 

The voice from Ramah refuses to be consoled. These are profound words in a world full of easy ways of consoling ourselves. Rachel’s cry refuses to spiritualize, explain away, ignore or deny the depth and truth of suffering in this world. She rejects soothing words and “can’t we all just get along” sentiments. Her refusal takes seriously the rupture and wounds of the world as well as the deep cost of seeking healing. It is a protest against the world as it is and the brokenness that seems so inevitable. Rachel allows the truth to shake her to the very core. And she is remembered for this.

A voice is heard in Ramah, lamentation and bitter weeping. Rachel is weeping for her children;  She refuses to be comforted for her children, because they are no more.

Jeremiah 31:15 

Lord, help me lament the suffering in the world.

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