“A Spontaneous Lament”

The following is taken from Kelly M. Kapic, Embodied Hope: A Theological Meditation on Pain and Suffering, (Downers Grove: IVP Academic, 2017), 34-35. It is a spontaneous lament written by a friend of Kapic’s reflecting on the various struggles of life. It is a fictitious conversation with God regarding suffering.


Why did my daughter’s husband break her heart?
I know, little child
Won’t you tell me Father?
I won’t, my son

Why does my wife have to live in pain?
I know, little child
Won’t you tell me, Father? It would be easier
It wouldn’t, my son

Who do parents bury their children? It isn’t right
It isn’t, little child
Then get rid of death, Father
I am, my son

Why are people abused, persecuted and killed? Can’t you protect them?
I can, little child
Then do something
I did, my son

Why do my parents need to finish their lives in unrelenting misery? How is that merciful?
It is, little child
Then I don’t understand mercy
You don’t, my son

But it all hurts so much sometimes
I know it does, little child
How do you know Father?
I have felt all the pain of sin, my son

Can’t you make it all stop?
I can, little child
Then do it, Father
I started 2000 years ago and will finish soon, by son

I believe you, Father, help my unbelief
I love you, my son.

Though I am less than one-third of the way into the work, I am delighted with it to this point. I would particularly recommend this work to pastors who are looking for a way to minister faithfully to church members who are suffering.

Thus far, Kapic has taken into account the theological and pastoral dimensions of leading people through suffering in a compelling way. In short, Kapic has not tried to explain God in an abstract, aloof way, but has tried to provide an existential comfort during one’s moment of need by pointing to God’s identification with those who suffer and His eschatological hope through Jesus Christ.

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