Strength in Laughter

by Sheri Schofield

Times are tough. People are living with uncertainty about many things, including finances. I’m seeing more and more cars and truck with dents in them that the owners can’t afford to fix. People are struggling.

Just today, I saw a white truck with a dented door. At the center of the dent, the owner had painted a foot-long silhouette of a jogger plastered in a spread-eagle position on the door, as though he had run into it.

I laughed. Here was someone who chose to make a joke out of the damage to his truck, who chose humor over anger, and then shared the joke with others.

During American wars, the soldiers chose to joke about their struggles. Abraham Lincoln himself tried to find humor during the dark days of the Civil War, just as the troops did. Bob Hope was brought out to our troops during WWII and in later conflicts to tell jokes and lift the spirits of our soldiers.

Humor has been our way of coping with difficulties for a long, long time. It is a solidly Biblical tool given to us by our Creator to aid us in times of stress and sorrow.

Proverbs 17:22 tells us, “A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones” (NIV).

During the night of my own soul, when my husband slipped away from me into a deep depression that changed who he was, I turned to humor to find a way to cope with the tremendous loss. I exchanged letters with humor writers and learned their skills in order to write my own humor more effectively. I did not allow sorrow to drag me down, but chose laughter and joy instead. It is what saved me during those dark days.

Once, the Apostle Paul and Silas were having a difficult day in Philippi. They had been preaching the gospel of Jesus. When they cast demons out of a servant girl, her master was furious, for the girl had earned him a lot of money by telling people’s fortunes. So the owner incited a riot. The rulers of Philippi had Paul and Silas severely beaten and thrown into the darkest prison.

But the two Christians were not defeated! While they sat there in the darkness, they began to sing songs to God. The other prisoners heard them. Then God sent a great earthquake, opened the prison doors, and broke the chains off all the prisoners!

The jailer, knowing that he would be executed if the prisoners escaped, drew his sword to kill himself. But Paul shouted, “Don’t harm yourself! We are all here!”

The jailer cried out, “What must I do to be saved?”

Paul said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved!”

We now find our entire nation and, indeed the whole earth, battling a menacing foe: a pandemic. What can we do?

The answer remains the same as when Paul gave it over two thousand years ago: We must believe on Jesus – throw our trust on Him. After doing this, we can sing praises to God, laugh in the face of danger, lift each other up with humor and understanding, love one another joyfully, help those who are struggling, and stick together.  We can be generous with our smiles, for they can travel beyond social distancing to lift someone else up.

We can live in joyful trust in the One who loves us so much that he gave his one and only Son, Jesus, for us.

Joy dispels darkness. The joy of the Lord is our strength!

Who can you lift up today?

Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.  1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, NIV

TWEETABLE
Strength in Laughter – encouragement from Sheri Schofield on @AriseDailyDevo (Click to Tweet)

sheri schofieldAbout the author: Sheri Schofield is an award-winning children’s author-illustrator and children’s ministry veteran of 40 years. Sheri was named Writer of the Year in 2018 at the Colorado Christian Writers’ Conference for her work in effectively sharing the gospel of Jesus. Her ministry, Faithwind 4 Kids, can be followed on her blog at her website, http://www.sherischofield.com. Questions welcomed!

Read Sheri and her husband’s amazing story in One Step Ahead of the Devil: A Powerful Love Story. Thrust into national politics because of her husband’s work, Lissa McCloud struggles to save the life of the man she loves from those who are bent on his destruction. Based on true events, the reader is taken deep into the heart of national politics –all the way to Congress and the President of the United States.

Join the Conversation: What have you found to laugh about during these trying times?

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3 thoughts on “Strength in Laughter

  1. Thank you, Sheri! Laughter is a gift from God for strengthening and joy. My greatest joy right now is 3 year old granddaughter Matilda with black curly hair and a personality that charms. Just seeing her pose for photos brings me joy, especially when I remember she is our surprise grandchild. Praise God!

    Like

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