There are times for celebration and joy. And certainly there are many things to celebrate in our lives and borough. People, groups, beautiful beaches and countryside, strong friendships and support networks. 

But there are also times of lament. When we cry out against the pain we see and say that what we see is wrong. We don't turn away from God when we lament, we join him. The pain of the world is God's pain. 

I have been walking through a time of lament. On a personal level, for people I care about who are lost or struggling through mental health issues. For friends who battle with unemployment and financial problems. For people I love who are ill. 

But I also lament for this town, this country, this world. In Great Yarmouth the problems with benefits, unemployment, stretched mental health services, addictions, homelessness, racism, violence and more can seem overwhelming. Even in today's paper I have read of 3 people stabbed in Great Yarmouth.

"do not grieve like people who have no hope" 

But although it is right to mourn over hurt and injustice, we "do not grieve like people who have no hope" (1 Thessalonians 4:13) It is the very fact that we know God grieves that gives us hope. God grieves because this is not the world He created and it is not the world He longs for.  And it is not the world we will live in forever. We can have hope because the all-powerful God has a new world in mind, where there is no pain or suffering or crying.

And the seeds of that new world are present in our lives and town now. God is working, bringing hope out of hopelessness and new possibililties out of age-old problems. We have the choice to choose hope even as we lament and to water the seeds. 

Watch Gerard Kelly's powerful poem in the film above.