Saturday, March 19, 2022

Writing a Psalm of Lament

Today I need to get started on my Psalm of Lament for one of my seminary classes.  Here is the assignment, which is a really cool way to help us understand Psalms, particularly a psalm of lament:

This assignment has 2 parts (Please post as ONE document):
1) Write your own lament, either individual or communal, following the structure of the lament psalm as discussed in the videos, assigned readings, and power points.
There is no specified length for your lament. 
2) In one paragraph, discuss why you would or would not preach from an angry lament in your ministry setting.
Due Sunday, March 20 by 11:59 p.m. No attachments please. Cut and paste a previously written Word document with both parts in it.

I've been thinking about the assignment for days, but I feel a bit of hesitancy.  My main hesitancy is that there are so many possible laments:  climate change (it's 70 degrees warmer than normal in Antarctica, an event which would have been declared as impossible, until it happened--see this story in The Washington Post), the pandemic, the invasion of Ukraine, various refugee crises, so many of my friends moving away, and that's just the immediate list.

There are advantages to each one, and disadvantages too.  Part of me imagines that all of my classmates will be writing about Ukraine, so part of me wants to do something different.  But Putin is such an easy subject for a Psalm of lament--too easy?  And does climate change have an obvious enough villain?  Could my Psalm of lament ask for a planetary reset?  That's probably not a good idea for humans, depending on how far back we go. 

I have a bit of time before the due date, and this is the kind of writing assignment that won't take as much time as the writing assignment that asks for secondary sources--so I'm not panicked.  But it is time to make some choices.

As I move through seminary, my student mind is most engaged.  But there's always in the background my teacher mind and my writer mind.  My teacher mind evaluates assignments, and happily, so far, my teacher mind has been pleased and impressed.  My writer mind is always thinking, how could I recycle this work into other kinds of writing.  Some assignments don't lend themselves to much else, but this one has potential.

But first, I must begin . . . 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Who knows. However, first, I would
discern what YOU YOURSELF wanna
get-outta-that, dear. Me? I have
already decided on the best-in-the-
west Seventh-Heaven (like the Super8
motels? this is faaaaaaaaaar beyond
anythn I have yet to experience (im
an NDEr [Near Death Experiencer]):
☆ ☆
meet me Upstairs and
we're gonna party-hardy
F O R E V E R, babe.