• Broadway Church

A Formula for Grieving

One week ago I had the honor of being included in an event sponsored by Avodah, a Jewish Social Justice organization. Together with our Jewish neighbors, I witnessed a talk by Dr. Koach Frazier an audiologist, musician, healer, and activist (also a KC native). They invited us into a space of lament, laying out a process of lament, emphasizing its importance in our healing from loss.

Dr. Frazier told of their experiences drumming, singing, and marching in Ferguson and Orlando. To be honest, I was not expecting to be confronted with such stories of tragedy. My tears caught in the back of my throat until my throat wasn't big enough. Then the tears spilled from my eyes and ran down my cheeks. I just kept thinking, "The collective practices of grief I have experienced are no match for the tragedies I've witnessed". I deeply appreciate Dr. Frazier's offering to us, laying out this formula for lament:

1. Address - Dear _____,

2. Express the Distress - Why is _____ happening?

3. Stop and Remember - there was a point in time before, when there was tragedy in front of me and  somehow I made it through. It is behind me and I are still here.

4. Plea - Name what I need to repair the harm done to me.

5. Gratitude - Knowing that one day I'll be on the other side of it.

Dr. Frazier says, "If we're not dealing with our grief, we can't get past the fear, which means we're going to keep doing these things that are hurtful and harmful...". The call to us is to deal with our grief so we can live from a place of freedom. Our inner monologue becomes one of  "I am free" instead of "I am oppressed". 

I invite you to witness the talk for yourself, reflect on your own grief. What collective practices for grief would be helpful to you? What grief is unprocessed for you? What is your plea? Here is the link: You don't need to be a Facebook user to view it.

If you feel a need to lament, let's talk. Grief is sneaky deep and must be expressed. It can be scary to explore grief alone - I'm here: