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To cry is human. To lament is Christian…it has a unique purpose: Trust. It is a divinely-given invitation to pour out our fears, frustrations, and sorrows for the purpose of helping us to renew our confidence in God. (Vroegop, Desiring God, 2019).
This cohort is designed for those of us who want to take the next, vulnerable step of acknowledging the fear, exhaustion, anger, disappointment, and grief in our personal lives and the society around us. We are gathering to learn how to respond when it seems like not only life is attacking us, but God is, too—when we can do nothing more than weep and cry out, “How long, Lord? It should not be this way!” This is lament. In this experience we practice the prayer of petition. We choose, in faith, not to despair or deny our sorrow, but to speak out loud our pain to God, to ask for his intervention and declare, “yet,” his goodness and sovereignty are true. We go through sorrow to hope.
Using Mark Vroegop’s book, Dark Clouds, Deep Mercy: Discovering the Grace of Lament (Crossway, 2019), cohort members will engage lament as an intimate exercise, discuss core elements of lament, create personal prayers, and practice this honest call-out to God.
Who is the Cohort for?
This gathering is intended for people of all ages and walks of life who are ready to learn about lament—those who are seeking to move through suffering, ready to be honest with God, and emotionally mature enough to be discerning and vulnerable with others. Participants’ individual stories of lament will be invited.
12, including the leader
Cohort members will be provided Mark Vroegop’s book, Dark Clouds, Deep Mercy: Discovering the Grace of Lament.
Our cohort will meet five times, on the following Wednesday evenings, 6:30-7:45 PM, except the first meeting on September 2 will start at 5:30 pm and include dinner. We ask that participants commit to attending all five meetings.
September 2 | Introduction to Lament (starts at 5:30 pm)
September 23 | Turn to God
October 14 | Bring Your Complaint
November 4 | Ask Boldly for Help
November 18 | Choose to Trust
We plan to meet in-person at Upper House. However, as with everything during the COVID-19 pandemic, our planning is influenced by the trajectory of the pandemic as well as university, state, and county policies. At Upper House, space will be arranged to allow for physical distancing. We will also require masks. If it turns out our learning cohort needs to go virtual, we will pivot to online meetings.
CLOSED SEPT 2
Rebecca Cooks serves as the Upper House Hospitality and Event Coordinator, as well as on the leadership teams for the Intern Program and Fellows Program. After graduating from UW-Madison with degrees in French and International Studies (Global Security), she worked at High Point Church on the Administrative Team and in Small Group Ministry.