Karen's Devotions

This is a selected collection of my devotions e-published on Daily Devotions, Journey Christian Church, Irvine, California; George Bragg, Editor. To join the mailing list, email George, gbragg@cox.net.

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As a 25+ year homeschooling vet, post-cancer, math prof, mother of five, master's track and field athlete, and certificated private pilot, I have a lot to share about what God has done in my life. In 2000 I began writing devotions as something to try when it seemed like accoustic pianists were becoming an endangered species at church. I have since found great blessings from writing and sharing. God is good.

Monday, April 07, 2008

The Strength of Humor

First published April 4, 2008

Nehemiah 8:10 (NASB)
Then he said to them, "Go, eat of the fat, drink of the sweet, and send portions to him who has nothing prepared; for this day is holy to our Lord. Do not be grieved, for the joy of the LORD is your strength."

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Very recently my husband and I saw the Christian comedian, Nazareth (info@nazarethusa.com) perform. He made the audience hysterical with laughter as he poked fun at various everyday occurrences like getting stuck in southern California traffic and the junk foods we eat. When he happened upon the subject of fatherhood, he asked the audience if any father had sat through caesarean section births. My husband proudly raised his hand high and when called upon admitted that he had been present during my three C-sections. Nazareth was delighted to have a fellow 3-C dad in the camp. He was more delighted when Jeff provided great fodder for more jokes! After some fun grilling, he concluded that Jeff was a mathematician that removed the twinkle from stars by adjusting the atmosphere! (Jeff invents equations to remove the distortion from atmospheric images in telescopes). I was laughing so hard, I couldn’t see. By the time Nazareth finished his bit about fatherhood, my stomach hurt!

On our way home after the show, I relayed to Jeff how I hadn’t ever laughed about my C-sections, especially the last in which I had cancer while being pregnant. That time in our lives was very tough. But the laughter seemed to release the sorrow and hurt that I still felt because the cancer surgeon wanted me to abort. Wow. There was strength in humor.

Today’s verse comes after a public reading of the Law. The people were very sad and repentant about having acted against the Lord through their sin. But Nehemiah and the Levites calmed the people by urging them to celebrate and have a party because doing right in God’s sight will strengthen them!

We all face trials that prevent us from laughing, much less smiling. We can trust that through His precepts, the Lord can give us strengthening joy through celebrating and laughing! Let’s make it a point today to receive God’s strength through laughter!

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Thank you Lord, for the ability to laugh and for those who help us laugh in your name. Give us strength through laughter to tackle the hardships of today and to let others see you through humor. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen.

Copyright 2008 by Karen Vaughn