Greedy Gratitude 30 Day Devotional
Day 20 - Smiles and Laughter
“If we couldn't laugh we would all go insane.”
― Robert Frost
“Laughter is poison to fear.”
― George R.R. Martin
“You have as much laughter as you have faith.”
― Martin Luther
I have spent much of my life trying to export laughter and smiles out of inadequate materials such as said by John Steinbeck.
This time of year can be a mixture emotions for many of us.
For some it’s a joyous time painted in wreaths and adorned with decorative ornaments of beautiful nostalgia.
For some it’s a pain and charcoal filled stocking.
Maybe it’s a mixture of the two but let me pose a call to find laughter and smiles amidst the pain.
As much as this life can hurl at us I’d like to point out any attacks are null and void in the grand scheme; it may hurt and can cause damage to our terrestrial shells and understanding but never our eternal providence. Our hope is in our Savior Jesus and He has more than overcame so we can more than overcome.
I know that may sound like this annoyingly optimistic jargon(which if that is the case I don’t know how I relayed that because I’m far from optimistic) but the reality of our faith is that Christ came to redeem and we have believed thus we are called to this deeper understanding of the beauty of faith, trust and redemption.
Have you ever been in a quarrel with someone and they just smile or laugh?
Can we be honest.
How annoyingly frustrating is that?
It almost takes the, most likely meaningless fight, to a heightened degree.
I imagine this is how the enemy of our joy feels when we can proactively smile and laugh in the much of adversity and confusion.
Just remember how much power there is in a smile and laughter and lets’s never lose this.
As a church.
As a body of believers.
As a community of disheveled and misplaced.
I love how, no matter how rough and rocky my day or week has been, that when I walk into the doors of 29:11 it’s an almost immediate exchange of hurt for joy.
I envision it like a door attendant waiting to take our coat of torment and give us a ticket that entitles us freedom and transparent victory over the highs and lows of life.
There seems to be a consistent echo of song and laugh that echo of our church walls even when no one is there. (in the most non-creepy way possible)
What does the Bible say about smile and laughter? Plenty.
-Proverbs 15:30 A cheerful look brings joy to the heart; good news makes for good health.
—Proverbs 17:22 A joyful heart is good medicine, but depression drains one’s strength.
—Proverbs 15:13-15 A glad heart makes a happy face; a broken heart crushes the spirit. A wise person is hungry for knowledge, while the fool feeds on trash. For the despondent, every day brings trouble; for the happy heart, life is a continual feast.
—Psalm 126:2-3 Then our mouth was filled with laughter, and our tongue with shouts of joy; then they said among the nations, “The LORD has done great things for them.” The LORD has done great things for us; we are glad.
If this is a tumultuous time or season in your life I’d like to encourage you to seek God for strength to smile through the pain.
Here is more scripture to glean from.
—James 1:2-4 Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness, And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.
—Matthew 5:12 Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
—Romans 5:3-4 We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation.
—Romans 12:12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.
Action Plan—If you are struggling to find anything to smile about I would implore you to find some of the joys of your youth.
Go on a trip.
Commit to meeting with someone from our community.
Enjoy a beautifully crafted cup of coffee or tea.
Get up early and watch the sunrise.
Take the long way home.
Take a moment to reflect on what God has done in your life; the snares He has sheltered you from and more importantly thank Him for the heartache and mistakes you have made because ultimately everything in our life is to reflect glory back to Him