Posts Tagged ‘cheerful heart’

The Day the Laughter Died

Jan 05

by Victoria Robinson

Some would say that April 26, 1989 is the day the laughter died. That is the day that the greatest comedienne of all time died. Lucille Ball who spent her life bringing laughter to millions was silenced. My dearest friend Cyndee and I have spent numerous hours laughing while watching I Love Lucy. Who could resist laughing as Lucy and Ethel frantically gobble handfuls of chocolate candy to hide their failure on their new job venture. What about that hilarious expression on Lucy’s face when her boss says, “Speed it up a little!”? But alas, our lives are not always filled with laughter. Life has a way of turning laughter into mourning.

The Bible gives us many examples of times the laughter died. One such was when Sarah had given birth to Isaac. On this joyous day she said, “God has brought me laughter, and everyone who hears about this will laugh with me.” Interestingly the name Isaac is Yitschaq in Hebrew which means “he laughs”. Yet, there would come a day when Sarah would find herself not laughing.  A great feast was held when Isaac was weaned. The truth is Sarah’s distress on this particular day was the result of sin. Sarah had refused to wait on the promise of God to have a child and took matters into her own hands. Subsequently Hagar gave birth to Abraham’s first son, Ishmael. At the feast, Sarah observed Ishmael mocking her son Isaac. Like any mother, this upset her.

Girlfriends, has your laughter died? There are many reasons we  find ourselves not laughing. One is quite simply sin. If this is why your laughter has ceased, then immediate repentance will bring joy to your heart and times of laughter to return.

 Another reason is that our heavenly Father allows difficulties to come into our life in order for His greater purposes to be accomplished. Such is the case of the many hardships Joseph had to endure in the book of Genesis. If this is the reason you have no laughter, then accepting God’s greater plan for your life will bring you joy. Last year in the short span of a week I had three friends lose their husbands. All these ladies have accepted Jesus Christ into their lives and have the comfort only He can provide. However, understandably this was a period in their lives with very little laughter.

The enemy of your soul also wants to steal your laughter. Sometimes he will even convince you of a lie. For instance, “God is not going to bring you through a difficult time.” The only way to prevent Satan from absconding with your laughter is shielding yourself with the Word. The book of Ephesians tells us to take up the shield of faith, with which we can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. The word faith in the original Greek is pistis which means conviction of the truth. The way to have conviction of the truth is to immerse yourself in the Word of God.

Laughter is an important gift our heavenly Father has given us. The Word of God tells us laughter can even bring healing to our bodies.
 
While we must recognize the truth that King Solomon told us so long ago—there is a time to weep and a time to laugh, let us examine our hearts to see if and why the laughter has died. If repentance is needed then, let us have a change of heart and watch the laughter return. If we are walking through divinely appointed hardships, let us rejoice in the fact that our heavenly Father knows what is best for us. If we are believing lies Satan is telling us, let us put on the shield of conviction of the truth of the Word of God.
 

Dearest girlfriends, I pray we would allow the laughter to return to our hearts and enjoy the life God has chosen for us.

Abraham was a hundred years old when his son Isaac was born to him. Sarah said, “God has brought me laughter, and everyone who hears about this will laugh with me.” And she added, “Who would have said to Abraham that Sarah would nurse children? Yet I have borne him a son in his old age.” The child grew and was weaned, and on the day Isaac was weaned Abraham held a great feast. But Sarah saw that the son whom Hagar the Egyptian had borne to Abraham was mocking, and she said to Abraham, “Get rid of that slave woman and her son, for that slave woman’s son will never share in the inheritance with my son Isaac.” ~ Genesis 21:5-10 NIV
 
But Joseph said to them, “Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. ~ Genesis 50:19-20 NIV
  
So give yourselves humbly to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. And when you draw close to God, God will draw close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and let your hearts be filled with God alone to make them pure and true to him. Let there be tears for the wrong things you have done. Let there be sorrow and sincere grief. Let there be sadness instead of laughter, and gloom instead of joy. Then when you realize your worthlessness before the Lord, he will lift you up, encourage and help you. ~ James 7:7-10 TLB
 
In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. ~ Ephesians 6:16 NIV
 
A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. ~ Proverbs 17:22 NIV
  

a time to weep and a time to laugh … ~ Ecclesiastes 3:4 NIV
 
She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come. ~ Proverbs 31:25 NIV
 
… Blessed are you who weep now, for you will laugh. ~ Luke 6:21 NIV

Enjoying A Continual Feast

Jul 31

by Victoria Robinson

Girlfriends, if you could have a continual feast would your banquet table look like the one I picture? One that is beautifully decorated with the soft glow of candlelight and most importantly every delicacy would be laden with chocolate! Every scrumptious chocolate dessert you can dream of would be sitting there waiting for me to devour. I can just imagine what you are thinking girlfriends, “Sin on your lips puts fat on your hips!”  You are right, but for a moment let’s just enjoy the luxurious thought of enjoying a continual feast of chocolate. Afterall, chocolate is not sinful unless we overindulge.

King Solomon tells us about the person who enjoys a continual feast. He said, “… the cheerful heart has a continual feast.”

The man who is depressed sees in each day only those dismal events that serve to increase his already extensive fear. The man whose life is possessed by a merry heart sees such evidences of God’s faithfulness that his days are bright and his soul has a continual feast. The source of such festivity is the settled conviction that every affliction and blessing has its source in God’s love.
KJV Bible Commentary

This wonderful commentary illuminates the hindrance to enjoying a continual feast—disatisfaction with our heavenly Father’s plans for us. To have a continual feast we must trust in the knowledge that our heavenly Father loves us and whatever He allows to happen to us—whether an affliction or blessing is good for us. Acknowledging His supreme sovereignty will change our focus from our own selfish desires to accepting His desires. This in turn will result in a festivity of continual feasting in our hearts.

When facing a catastrophic famine, the prophet Habakkuk declared that although everything was going to fail, he would trust in God. He said, “Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Savior.” What a marvelous testimony to remind us to joyfully trust in God. Can’t you just picture the continual feast in Habakkuk’s heart?

Dearest girlfriends, let us develop a cheerful heart and enjoy the resulting continual feast.

A happy heart makes the face cheerful, but heartache crushes the spirit. … All the days of the oppressed are wretched, but the cheerful heart has a continual feast. ~ Proverbs 15:13,15 NIV
 
When times are good, be happy; but when times are bad, consider: God has made the one as well as the other. … ~ Ecclesiastes 7:14 NIV
 
Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Savior. ~ Habakkuk 3:17-18 NIV
 
For the word of the Lord holds true, and everything he does is worthy of our trust. ~ Psalm 33:4 NLT
 
The Lord will work out his plans for my life—for your faithful love, O Lord, endures forever. … ~ Psalm 138:8 NLT

A Laughing Matter

May 30

by Victoria Robinson

In one of the all-time classic I Love Lucy episodes, while the Ricardos and the Mertzes are traveling in Italy, Lucy is determined to land a role in the Italian movie, “Bitter Grapes.” As the mayhem ensues Lucy finds herself pretending to be an experienced grape stomper in order to research and bring realism to her role. Who can forget the hilarious images of Lucy and her fellow vineyard worker tussling in the purple staining grapes. While I have seen this episode more times than I can count, it never fails to make me laugh. Interestingly enough, in Bible times when grapes were being stomped, there was oftentimes great laughter and enjoyment. So it should be in our lives–there should be times of great laughter which will bring health to our bodies.

King Solomon wisely told us there are times to laugh and that a cheerful heart is good medicine. How about taking his advice and inviting some girlfriends over for some fun activities? My best friend and I have wonderful memories of watching I Love Lucy together, cracking up to the point of tears streaming down our cheeks. I have become her Lucy and she is my Ethel. Our laughter has brought so much happiness to our lives.

While we recognize the truth of laughter not being able to mask a heavy heart, taking a break from troubling times can be very refreshing. Perhaps you know someone who could benefit immensely if they could just enjoy some laughter. You could make a real difference in their circumstances by providing some fun times. Go and allow your heavenly Father to use you as His instrument of healing.

Dearest girlfriends, I pray God would send us all some times of laughter to brighten our faces and hearts.

A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a broken spirit saps a person’s strength. ~ Proverbs 17:22 NLT
 
We were filled with laughter, and we sang for joy. And the other nations said, “What amazing things the Lord has done for them.” Yes, the Lord has done amazing things for us! What joy! ~ Psalm 126:2-3 NLT
  
Laughter cannot mask a heavy heart. When the laughter ends, the grief remains. ~ Proverbs 14:13 TLB
 
… a time to laugh … ~ Ecclesiastes 3:4 NIV