What Is Better Than Laughter?
Laughter is an audible expression or appearance of happiness, or an inward feeling of joy and pleasure. Someone once said, “Always learn to laugh because it is a cheap medicine.” The Bible tells us in the book of Proverbs that a merry heart doeth good like a medicine. Doctors now tell us that laughter can be used to reduce levels of stress and is a good physical workout for the stomach. I don’t know about you, but I personally love to laugh and have a good time. I enjoyed the times that I had growing up laughing with my friends and family. However, the Bible tells us that there is something that is better than laughter!
In Ecclesiastes 7:3, the Bible tells us that sorrow is better than laughter. When I came across this verse, I remember wondering how sorrow could be better than laughter. The definition of sorrow is “deep distress, sadness, or regret, especially for the loss of someone or something loved; an unhappy or unpleasant state.” As I think about teenagers, I think about so many of them who are even now as teens experiencing great sorrow in their lives for these reasons and more:
- Parents’ divorce
- Death of a relative
- Rejection by a parent
- Cruelty of peers
- Lack of finances
- Hurts from the past
God’s Word tells us in Isaiah 40:30, “Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall.” Teenagers in our country today are experiencing great sorrow! Yet through it all, God tells us that sorrow is better than laughter.
Why would God tell us that it is better for us to experience sorrow than for us to experience laughter? Allow me to share with you several reasons why sorrow is better than laughter.
First of all, sorrow breaks us. Because of our human nature and pride, we sometimes have a tendency to think we do not need God, that we can live without Him. When a person goes through a trial or sorrow in your faith, he sometimes comes to the realization that he needs God more than anything else. Sometimes God will allow a sorrow in your life to show you that you need Him. Sorrows and trials are never something that God does to us, but something rather that He does for us.
Secondly, sorrow builds us. God wants to build you right now as a teenager into a mighty man or woman for His glory; therefore, He is going to give you the opportunity to experience sorrow. The more sorrows you have, the more opportunities you have to be stronger. I think of people who lift weights and seek to become stronger. When lifting weights, a person is actually breaking down the muscles so in order to make them stronger when they build back up. Instead of allowing your sorrow to bend you, instead allow it to build you.
Lastly, sorrow will bind us. The Bible tells us in II Corinthians 1:4, “Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.” Have you ever experienced a sorrow in your life only to meet someone who is experiencing the same trial you experienced just a short time later? God allowed that in your life so that you could help that person. It seems as though there is always a special bond between two people when they have experienced the same trial. The situation that you are in now may allow you to show someone in the future how God gave you victory in your life. When you can look someone in the eye and say, “I know what you’re going through,” God binds your heart to that person to help him.
In closing, the Bible tells us in Revelation 21:4, “And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.”Teenager, there is coming a day when no heartache shall come! But in the meantime, the sorrow you experience is better than laughter.