I have a very unique laugh. I claim it and am proud of it. It’s loud and distinct. In a crowd, I can be found within minutes. Growing up, I would have people wait for me in the hallways of the movie theater after the movie was over because they heard me laughing during the movie.
It’s always been my trademark. My first reaction to everything was laughter. Whether I was hurting, sad, angry, or truly joyful, I laughed.
My junior year in high school, we had a bit of a morbid writing assignment, so of course, I took it on wholeheartedly. We were asked to write our epitaph and without even batting an eyelash, I knew what mine would be. And still to this day, it is what I have determined will be on my headstone.
She laughed at death
because God was in her heart
and she was in His hands.
Laughter…it’s always been coursing through my veins until one day it wasn’t.
I am not sure what happened, or the exact time my laughter faded, but it did. Maybe it was a mix of sleepless nights and changes in life and my abrupt understanding of how evil people can be…I really can’t remember. I just remember one day looking at my friend and saying, “I don’t laugh like I used to.”
This scared me. I wanted my old carefree, joyful self back, but I couldn’t figure out how to get there. I prayed, studied God’s precious word, and wrapped myself in his faithfulness and goodness. In the end, I realized fear–something I never knew I possessed–was squelching my joy and laughter.
Over the years, the fears I have held onto have slowly melted away. By the grace of God’s patience, he let me wrangle through the core issues In the process, I learned to truly trust Him no matter what the day brings. Only then did my laughter start to return.
Not only do I not hold onto those fears anymore, but I am also no longer ensnared by the stress that accompanied those fears.
The devil is soooooo sneaky. He averted my attention and my joy from my God, the God who created the world and everything in it and the God who is faithful to everything He created. (Psalm 145)
Oh, you devil, how did I let you do that? Slowly….soooo tricky. So slowly you turned my head and my heart and before I realized it, my eyes were not always on the Lord. but focused on my fear and how to avoid it. Tricky, tricky, tricky.
Well, dear Satan, I have since learned this wonderful truth and have tucked it into my heart so that my joy can no longer be squelched. My joy can no longer be deterred. I will continue to laugh at death and all your lies, because I do have God in my heart and He does hold me in His hands. It is a promise he has made. I trust his promises and will no longer trust your lies.
I keep my eyes ALWAYS on the LORD. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken! Psalm 16:8
Today, after helping with an event, a lady walked up to me and said, “I love your laugh. It’s sincere and unique.” (She might have used slightly different words but the same sentiment was there.) When I heard her say that, I felt the seal of joy on my heart and honestly got a little emotional on the inside. Never again will I allow Satan to steal my joy.
I’ve got my laugh back! The laugh that signifies a complete trust in God no matter what the day brings. And just a little reminder for you, Satan, next time you try to steal my joy, you will not win because Christ has already defeated you!
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