“The Lord said to Abraham, ‘Why did Sarah laugh?’” Genesis 18:13 NIV.
God can turn incredulous disbelief into inexpressible delight.
My thoughts and comments today ask, “Who’s laughing now?”
Have you thought much about laughter? I amused myself one day by thinking of the variety of words to describe differing forms of laughter like: smile, grin, smirk, giggle, titter, snicker, chuckle, cackle, guffaw, but my favorite may be chortle. I am chortling just reading these words.
As the words differ, all laughter is not the same either. There is a nervous laugh from discomfort when a person is unsure or uncomfortable. There is a scoffing or skeptical laugh of disbelief when something sounds too good to be true or you know to be untrue. There is the sound of a friend laughing with you, differing from the awkward moment when someone is laughing at you. And there is the happy laugh of your own joyful anticipation of good.
“The Lord said to Abraham, ‘Why did Sarah laugh?’” Genesis 18:13 NIV. Sarah’s incredulous laugh happened before discretion could stifle it. Hearing Abraham being told that she would have a child was more than she could mentally process or dare to believe. That time of life was long past. Read Romans 4:17-22 NKJV/Hebrews 11:11-12 NIV.
Months later, Sarah again laughed but her laugh was far different as she cradled the miraculous son in her arms, as promised by God. God had changed her laughter from incredulous to incredible! Sarah named her son Isaac, whose name means, “God has made me laugh, and all who hear will laugh with me.” Genesis 21:1-8. God changed her laughter forever from disbelief to inexpressible joy. Others would never again laugh at her, but would laugh with her.
Maybe there are prayers you have not dared believe God would, or could answer. A promise of God that once warmed your heart now seems too long delayed, until you are no longer expectant. Maybe dreams and hopes that once brought joyful anticipation now silence your laughter. There is good news. God has a plan for you that will turn your laughter of disbelief into inexpressible delight. “For I know the plans I have for you . . to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 NIV.
Every day, God wants to birth new life in and through you. He whispers promises of your future that He will fulfill. God’s delays are not denials. “For I will turn their mourning to gladness; I will give them . . joy instead of sorrow.” Jeremiah 31:13 NIV. Isaiah prophesied of Messiah, “The Spirit of the Lord has anointed Me . . to comfort all who mourn . . to give them the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness.” Isaiah 61:1-3 NKJV. Listen closely to your heart; you may hear God laughing and inviting you to laugh with Him.
Life should be – and can be – filled with laughter. Laughter is healing and contagious, brightening your life as well as the hearts of others. God loves to fill your days with laughter; share that laughter and brighten the lives and hopes of others. Solomon wrote, “Being cheerful keeps you healthy. It is slow death to be gloomy all the time.” Proverbs 17:22 TEV. See Psalm 126:1-6 NIV.
My prayer for you today is for your laugh to be of joyous expectation, not disbelief.