“The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” (Lamentations 3:22-23)
I often have trouble sleeping. Like many women, I lay in the dark and all my thoughts begin rushing to my mind. What is my schedule tomorrow? What time is my son’s baseball game? Did I sign that permission slip for the field trip? Did my husband set his alarm? Did I close the garage? I wonder what will happen on tomorrow’s episode of This is Us….
Can you see where I’m going here? I think as women we tend to constantly plan and be on top of what is going on with our family, our careers, our friends and the world in general. And often those thoughts become very weighty. I remember distinctly lying in bed as tears fell when I realized in my mama heart that something was not quite right with my youngest son. He was about three years old and just didn’t seem to be developing as he should. In the darkness, in the night, I knew, and I cried.
A diagnosis for you, your spouse or one of your family members can be weighty. For me, in darkness, at night, those heavy feelings become as heavy as an elephant. Tears begin to flow. Even scripture says “weeping may come in the night …” (Psalm 30:5). One commentator I read said, “Our wearied nerve and brain seem unable to bear up under pressure. Our pulse throbs and fevered, restless body refuses to help in the work of endurance.” As I lay there, my soul is weary and dark. But oh, there is hope!
Our God does not leave us. David continued to write in that verse I mentioned earlier, “but joy comes in the morning” (Psalm 30:5). YES! Joy. After the struggle. After the sleepless nights, there is joy. The morning after the struggle and the heavy elephant sitting on me, light shines. The sun comes up and sheds light on a new day.
Maybe those financial struggles that keep you awake at night are still there in the morning, but there is always hope in Jesus. Maybe that child who is causing heartbreak is still a prodigal, but you can approach the throne of the Savior with joy on his behalf. Maybe that dream of marriage and family is dying after being single for so long, but God is longing to bring joy in the sunrise. The light of a new day and the hope of what is to come is never farther than a whispered prayer. He hears our cries. He sees our tears. He gives us joy.
Just this past Sunday, Pastor Mike mentioned this in the book of Lamentations. He spoke of the prophet Jeremiah being so weary because of all that had happened to him as he watched his world crumbling around him. But in Lamentations 3, starting in verse 21, he writes, “But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope: The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; His mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness” (Lamentations 3:21-23, emphasis mine).
And joy can lead to laughter. In Ecclesiastes 3:2-4, we are reminded there is a time for everything: “A time to be born and a time to die. A time to plant and a time to harvest. A time to kill and a time to heal. A time to tear down and a time to build up. A time to cry and a time to laugh. A time to grieve and a time to dance.”
Yes, we can cry. Yes, we are to weep, to experience that brokenness; but we are also to harvest, to heal, to dance and to laugh. I love to laugh to most of all of those. It is my absolute favorite thing to do - laugh until my sides hurt. Laughter is truly the best medicine.
No, my problems have not gone away. My son has a diagnosis that he will live with for the rest of his life. And this may cause struggle in his life and ours. More tears will fall in the night. But my son is the epitome of joy! His smile in infectious. He spreads love to everyone he meets. And his laughter is contagious. And my joy always comes in the morning.
When was the last time you turned those tears to joy and laughter? Take some time and bask in the joy the Father wants to pour down on you. Join the Women’s Ministry for a free night of laughter on April 25th at C3: Comedy, Cake and Coffee with Kerri Pomarolli. We all need a good laugh!