For they shall laugh

87e534082947777ebe21908761810496I’ve always believed in the Bible, but have struggled a bit with one of the verses in it. “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall laugh.” The word “laugh” seemed a bit ironic to me. Was it a translation error? Perhaps it just meant that we should be happy, even in our trials.

My interviews with those who had experienced great hardship gave me a new perspective, however, finding three different “laughing” experiences. The first group who laugh are those who are surprised with being able to make it through a trial. Many will say, “I never would have believed I’d make it through this.” Laughing for these persons is more a sense of relief or surprise rather than humor. It feels like a miracle to have made it that far.

The second group consists of those who feel they almost have superhuman strength, or at least an incredible strength of another, protecting them. (This was comparable to the “remote misses” I mentioned in a previous post). These people are like the main character in the movie “Rocky,” who, even when bruised and beaten in the ring, taunts his opponent because he (Rocky) can’t be defeated. Or David, who facing down his Goliath, ran at him without a spear, sword, or armor.   These people essentially laugh in the face of danger. They thrive in the face of bad odds.

The final group includes those who have known great hardship, and after developing their Survivor’s Muscle (see the previous post), use that sense of optimism and strength help others with their own trials. Perhaps this is what Sarah, who despite a very old age she became pregnant, meant when she said, “God hath made me to laugh, so that all that hear will laugh with me” (Genesis 21:6).

This last experience is something I saw time and time again in my research, and was amazed at the ability of those who could use their trials as a source of comfort and strength for others. They realized that what others needed most was not pity, but humor, optimism, and enjoyment to work through their struggles.

Perhaps there is a time to weep, and a time to LOL (despite our trials) after all.

–Ecclesiastes 3:4

 

 

 

Comments

  1. I love this post and can’t wait for your book to come out!!!

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