After several months of weighty things happening and big feelings ensuing, I found myself almost constantly heavy. My soul was crying for a break, a reprieve from the weightiness of it all.
Taking stock of my heart and my time, I found two things that helped tremendously:
First, God's Word.
When I slowed myself and made seeking Jesus a priority, I could feel fresh life flowing into my soul. The problem was, so often I found myself coming to church and my Bible and prayer seeking knowledge or validation or holiness, instead of relationship.
Relationship with Jesus, through church and the Bible and prayer and community, is life and sustenance for your soul.
I couldn't sit through two minutes of a serious movie or emotional book. My heart was too overwhelmed already to handle any emotions or weight beyond those already in my real life. But when I laughed, the weight was lifted a bit.
There is a holiness in laughter. A freedom that reminds us there is good and joy and peace in this world and it is a gift from God.
Because laughter, paired with a deep and trusting relationship with God, brings freedom.
It reminds us that the weight of the world isn't all on us.
...that life isn't all deep and serious.
...that good and wholesome does exist.
...that this deep weightiness is a season.
...that God created good and laughter and fun and expects us to enjoy them!
So I’ve watched tv shows and read books and had conversations that have made me smile and giggle and laugh and it’s been good…mostly.
Because laughter as a gift is soul-filling and life-giving. But laughter as escape or distraction is never as enriching. It always the same.
Anything we turn to for distraction or escape will in the end never prove the soul-filling and life-giving reprieve we truly need.
If I truly want to be refreshed and restored, in the good times or in the difficult, I must first be filled by Christ. But once my heart is settled on Him and my mind is stayed in His truth, laughter becomes a glorious gift.
Laugh hard and often and free. Laugh long and loud and let yourself cry and snort and be laughed at in the process. Receive laughter as a gift and give it as a blessing.