Matthew 27:45
From noon until three in the afternoon darkness came over all the land.

“From noon until three in the afternoon, darkness came over all the land” (Matthew
27:45). These are the descriptive words used by the author of the 1st Gospel to highlight
the horror of Jesus’ time on the Cross. While this darkness was certainly a literal event,
it brings to us the message of the “darkness” of humanity. In the season of Lent at
Crosstown, we’re pursuing a spiritual practice by living in both the darkness of Jesus’
death as well as the “darkness” of our daily existence.

In recent days, the darkness in our world has been overwhelming. Back to back weeks
brought us the horrific news of 15-year-olds being murdered. First, it was Jahmari Rice
in Richfield. The headline of the following week was the shooting of Deshaun Hill in
Minneapolis. In global “darkness,” our screens are now littered with the horror of war in
Ukraine as destruction rips apart that nation and her people. In personal “darkness,” we
know the ache of hardship from the death of loved ones and the diagnosis of chronic or
terminal illness. Sadly, we are confronted with the necessity of joining with the author of
Psalm 6, “All night long I flood my bed with weeping and drench my couch with tears.”

Soong-Chan Rah is a professor at North Park Seminary in Chicago. In his work,
Prophetic Lament: A Call for Justice in Troubled Times, Dr. Rah writes: “The American
church avoids lament…this results in a serious deficiency in which we forget the
necessity of lamenting over suffering and pain.
” During Lent ’22 @ Crosstown, we’re
seeking to confront this deficit and walk into the darkness. We will endeavor to join
Jesus and know the darkness.
-Pastor John Jacobi
David penned a number of lament prayers. As as a spiritual practice we invite you to use his words to cry out in grief, sadness, and pain to the Almighty LORD.
Praying Psalm 6
All night long I flood my bed with weeping
    and drench my couch with tears.
My eyes grow weak with sorrow;
    they fail because of all my foes.
Away from me, all you who do evil,
    for the Lord has heard my weeping.
Songs of lament. Music does connect to our souls.
This week's song is "Drive Out The Darkness" with lyrics pleading for God to "come be our light" and begging that the LORD would not be silent.
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