Lamentations 5, 14 – 18
Something to read
The old men have left the city gate,
the young men their music.
The joy of our hearts has ceased;
our dancing has been turned to mourning.
The crown has fallen from our head;
woe to us, for we have sinned!
Because of this our hearts are sick,
because of these things our eyes have grown dim:
because of Mount Zion, which lies desolate;
jackals prowl over it.
Something to think about
It’s no surprise that when something as devastating as we read about in Lamentations occurs, the joy people express in things like music and dancing ceases. As today’s passage says, hearts become sick and eyes dim.
However, it may be a surprise to learn that Christian Aid supports projects using the arts to help those who’ve experienced trauma.
In Gaza, our partner CFTA, the Culture and Free Thought Association, work with children and young people employing drama, arts, crafts, dance and games in the therapy sessions they offer. To laugh, to dance and to play helps to bring healing.
Support like this helps young people to leave behind anger and fear brought about by the military attacks they have experienced.
This is critical, not only for their own development, but also for the hope of a future peace between Israelis and Palestinians.
Something to do
Make someone laugh today, laugh with them and enjoy the gift of joy.
Something to pray
Hear, Lord, and be merciful to me; Lord, be my help. You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, that my heart may sing your praises and not be silent. Lord my God, I will praise you forever.
Today’s contributor is David Muir, Christian Aid’s Senior Regional Co-ordinator for its South East region