Laments for Trayvon Martin
Many of us at UUMC are still mourning the tragedy of Trayvon Martin’s death and trial but because we don’t know where to go with our grief, it simply remains buried in our hearts and bones. A group of both UUMC and Wesley UMC folks have been meeting for weekly bible study of the Psalms and prophets and have decided to put what they’ve learned into a spiritual practice for just this reason. They are inviting the rest of us to join them.
All are invited to write a lament about the case of Trayvon Martin. This is an opportunity to express the grief within and to offer our hopes of a better day. Optional three-fold steps on how to write a lament modeled off of a Psalm are found below.
1. Write about the core source of grief/pain/injustice/etc. This sentence (or sentences) act as a pouring out of sorrow or fear.
2. Remember the truths of our faith and write out what your heart and soul might need to remember in this time. Perhaps how God has been faithful in the past or that the Spirit continues to moves in us today. Reflect on a hopeful truth.
3. Write your request/plea/prayer. Reword the original lament through a voice of prayerful request of God and of the world.
4. An example of this structure in Psalm 142 is below.
Please e-mail your lament to Mary Ann at firstname.lastname@example.org by Sunday, Sept 8 and UUMC would like to publish these laments together on social media and perhaps even local journalism. We believe that this is not only an opportunity to use a spiritual practice as means of healing but also that our words of lament can be a powerful witness for others. Laments will be published without names so that we can focus on our united voice. They may also be edited to ensure, in our different voices, we are still one. Please keep your lament to one page.
A Maskil of David. When he was in the cave. A Prayer.
1 With my voice I cry to the BELOVED;
with my voice I make supplication to the BELOVED.
I pour out my complaint before him;
I tell my trouble before him.
3 When my spirit is faint,
you know my way.
In the path where I walk
they have hidden a trap for me.
Look on my right hand and see—
there is no one who takes notice of me;
no refuge remains to me;
no one cares for me.
I cry to you, O BELOVED;
I say, ‘You are my refuge,
my portion in the land of the living.’
6 Give heed to my cry,
for I am brought very low.
Save me from my persecutors,
for they are too strong for me.
7 Bring me out of prison,
so that I may give thanks to your name.
The righteous will surround me,
for you will deal bountifully with me.