Better Than Laughter

“Sorrow is better than laughter,

Because a sad face is good for the heart.”

Ecclesiastes 7:3

This is NOT my favorite verse!   I’d much prefer beginning my day with a happy verse that can set me on my way to a happy day of sunshine and little happy birds flitting and twittering in my garden.  It’s January, very cold (-10 F), and I will have to go out there soon.  Not only that, but the new COVID strain is at its height where I live.  

So, here is the verse with which I begin this day.  It is part of a long list of verses that have a similar message.  Honestly, I’d prefer to crawl back into my warm, comfy bed and sleep until April.

BUT, I know these words are absolutely true, whether I like them or not.  Sorrow has become a part of my life, especially in the past five years.  Its entrance was part of drastic changes to every aspect of the life I’d been living.  And it’s made me have to hold to God more tightly, see Him more clearly, and know Him more deeply.

Picture a garden that has produced a lot of vegetables over the years.  It’s been happy, and fruitful.  At a certain time, the gardener decides it is necessary to plow up all the ground, exposing the rich earth below the surface.  The surface ground needs to rest and mix with the rich, deeper soil for a season.  A plow with sharp blades begins cutting into the garden’s soil, churning up the richer soil below.  It’s turned upside-down, now exposed to the sunshine and rain (and snow!) that will become part of its new season.  

Does the churned-up soil freak out?   Try to get back to where it’s been?  Get mad at the gardener?   Run from the big blade?  

No.  Sorrow is the tool that moves the ground in a way that the seeds that are planted will grow stronger, richer, and more healthy to provide the nourishment for those who will be fed from its fruits.  The intentions and purposes behind the process of the Gardener are all good.  The sorrow and the pain of this part of the process will bring about all good things in their season.  

So wait . . . because good things are to come.

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