In the book “Hurting with God: Learning to Lament with the Psalms,” Old Testament scholar Glenn Pemberton notes the absence of laments in modern hymnals when compared to the biblical book of Psalms. Laments pepper the Psalms, accounting for 40 percent of the collection.
Since my election in November to serve as the ninth editor of Word&Way, several faithful subscribers have shared with me how they have read Word&Way since they were kids. I understand. I recall bringing the Word&Way in from the mailbox as a child.
In 1787, so the story goes, a Russian named Grigory Potemkin erected a portable, fake village in order to impress the visiting Empress Catherine II.
Thus the phrase “Potemkin village” has come into our lexicon to describe anything literal or figurative that is constructed in order to deceive others into thinking that the situation is better than it really is.
Many experts scoff at the calculations used to pick “Blue Monday,” which would be January 16th this year. However, the seasonal concepts behind the idea — like colder weather, post-holiday letdown and less daylight — can often lead to people feeling down this time of year.
I had been building a relationship with an acquaintance in our city, but hit a stone wall when I urged him to accept Christ. Without animosity he explained: “I've watched churches all my life and notice you fight over all kinds of ideas and doctrines. I can't see myself becoming part of a religion that always seems to be fighting while claiming to represent God's love.”