Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Laugh it UP!

March 8, 2011
Laugh it up!
Mary Southerland

Today’s Truth
“I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly” (John 10:10, NKJV).

Friend to Friend
Jesus lived and died so that we can experience abundant life. Jesus did not come so that we can merely survive life. Pagans can survive life. God’s plan is for us to experience joy and peace – no matter what life holds.

John 10:10 clearly states the promise of God, “I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” In this verse, “abundant” literally means “going beyond; full or exuberant.” In other words, an abundant life is a life filled with joy. Even in the midst of a joy-less world, we can live a joy-filled life for one simple reason – God is in control. And because He is in control, we are promised, “the cheerful heart has a continual feast” (Proverbs 15:15 NIV). Life should be an ongoing celebration.

Now, be honest for a moment. Is your life a continual feast, a daily celebration? Would those who know you best describe you as a woman of joy? Laughter and joy are treasures from God, valuable to us for many reasons.

1. Joy heals. Proverbs 17:22 “A happy heart is like good medicine, but a broken spirit drains your strength.”


In other words, God created us to illustrate the truth, that if we laugh more days, we will have more days to laugh. Joy heals.

2. Joy makes us strong. Nehemiah 8:10 “The joy of the Lord is your strength.”

Joy – humor – laughter – all cultivate inner strength that operates beyond our own human abilities. The joy of the Lord in us will produce His strength through us. A life without joy is like a car without shock absorbers. It will be jolted by every bump in the road. Laughter and joy are the shock-absorbers of life and can radically change our perspective of life and the tough times it holds.


C. Joy makes the ordinary special.

Someone said, “If you have to move ten inches from where you are now to be happy, then you will never be truly happy.” As we learn to celebrate the ordinary things in life, we build a life of joy because it is against the backdrop of the ordinary that God’s work becomes extraordinary. We don’t have trouble celebrating the big events in life. Christmas, birthdays, anniversaries – are celebrations we anticipate and execute with great planning and forethought. We tend to place unrealistic expectations on these celebrations because there is no daily celebration of life.

So celebrate, my friends! Celebrate Tuesdays, half birthdays, haircuts, new jeans and report cards. Celebrate the day braces go on – and especially the day they come off. Celebrate if Dad comes home early. Hey, just celebrate if Dad comes home. ...

I want it all. I want everything God has for me. I want to celebrate life, but I often get so wrapped up in the urgent things that I lose sight of the important things. A celebratory attitude is slowly siphoned from our souls by the countless “joy robbers” the enemy sends our way. Guard your heart and mind. Refuse to surrender your God-given joy to anyone or anything. Join me this week as we celebrate Jesus. Party on, girlfriends!


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