Sorrow Is Better Than Laughter

King Hezekiah felt ill and was told to get his house in order, for that illness was for death. In his sorrow, and anguish of soul, he turned his face to the wall and prayed to the lord, saying, I beseech You, O Lord, remember now how I have walked before You in faithfulness and truth and with a whole heart and have done what is good in Your sight. And Hezekiah wept bitterly (II Kings 20:3). Nothing could comfort King Hezekiah in his sorrow, only to be in the presence of the Lord. His face carried a heavy weight of uncertainty of his future, which was about to end. Alone with the Lord, he pleaded his case. This is what he wrote after he had been sick and had recovered from his sickness: I said, In the noontide and tranquility of my days I must depart; I am to pass through the gates of Sheol, deprived of the remainder of my years.  I said, I shall not see the Lord, even the Lord, in the land of the living; I shall behold man no more among the inhabitants of the world. My dwelling is plucked up and is removed from me like a shepherd’s tent. I have rolled up my life as a weaver; the Lord cuts me free from the loom; from the day to night, You bring me to an end. I thought and quieted myself until morning. Like a lion He breaks all my bones; from day to night You bring me to an end. Like a twittering swallow or a crane, so do I chirp and chatter; I moan like a dove. My eyes are weary and dim with looking upward. O Lord, I am oppressed; take my side and be my security. But what can I say? For He has both spoken to me and He Himself has done it. I must go softly as my years and my sleep has fled because of the bitterness of my soul. O Lord, by these things men live; and in all these is the life of my spirit. O give me back my health and make me live! Behold, it was for my peace that I had intense bitterness; but You have loved back my life from the pit of corruption and nothingness, for You have cast all my sins behind Your back (Isa. 38:9-17). This is in a true sense, a feeling of sorrow. The psalmist said, Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning, and You have turned my mourning into dancing for me; You have put off my sackcloth and girded me with gladness. To the end that my tongue and my heart and everything glorious within me may sing praise to You and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give thanks to You forever (Psa. 30:5b,11-12).

A heart heavy with sorrow is a heart that is searching for answers, and not looking for entertainment. King Hezekiah said, It was for my peace that I had intense bitterness. The good that comes after sorrow and pain, when we submit ourselves to God, is greater than the sorrow we had to go through. Lessons we learn, maturity we achieve with understanding and wisdom. Sorrow of life is necessary to get us in close relationship with our Lord. The Patriarch Job said in the end of his ordeal, when he met God, I had heard of You by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees You. Therefore, I loathe and abhor myself and repent in dust and ashes (Job 42:5-6). It is good for me that I have been afflicted, said the psalmist, that I might learn Your statutes; and I know, O Lord, that Your judgments are right and righteous, and that in faithfulness You have afflicted me (Ps. 119:71, 75). King Solomon had an understanding of life in its expressions of feelings. Blessed with wisdom, but abandoning God and His moral principles, he went far out and away from Him. One of the worst of Israel’s king, so he became known. He had everything and above all that shows to be a need, he prided himself with all that was contrary to his God. When he wrote the book of Ecclesiastes, was from the perspective of a philosophical observer. Wrong in his observation of life in some instances at the beginning of the book, Solomon concluded it with good and wise advice. In the seventh chapter, he sees life with a different perspective; one that makes us to think and analyze his thoughts. On verse two of chapter seven, he says, It is better to go to the house of mourning that to go to the house of feasting, for that is the end of all men; and the living will lay it to heart. Verse three is the continuation of the thoughts from the second verse, for mourning is one of many reasons for sorrow. It is good that one should hope in and wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord, said the Prophet, for the Lord will not cast off forever! But though He causes grief, yet will He be moved to compassion according to the multitude of His loving-kindness and tender mercy (Lam. 3: 26,31-32).

While in the valley of sorrow, we must focus on the coming victory, and not in the hopelessness of the situation, if we do not give up. Know that it is in the valley that we have a better understanding of God’s love and a deeper relationship with Him.  Understand that we cannot get to the top of the mountain, without first facing the valley. Because life is a combination of good and evil, sorrow and laughter, let’s consider that there will not be one without the other, as the psalmist said, Weeping may endure all night, but joy comes in the morning (Ps. 30: 5b). The world’s joy is transitory and superfluous; those who seek the world’s joy will never be satisfied, but always looking for more the wrong way. Joy, however, that comes from within, from the Lord Himself, is enduring, even in times of sorrow. Paul said, Rejoice and exult in hope; be steadfast and patient in suffering and tribulation; be constant in prayer (Rom. 12:12). Faith must sparkle with hope that “This too shall pass.” That is, whatever you are going through.

Safety lies in the company of those who are mourning, of those who are suffering; our heart must pour out love- sacrificial love to give them hope and bring them out of their sorrows; Let’s shine hope to those who are hopeless; comfort in their sorrows. And they will know that there is life after all is over and done with. This way, we will show the true reflection of whom God is and He will be exalted.

Author: Jacinta da Cruz Rodgers

I have been committed to teaching the truth of the Word of God beginning with Trans World Radio on Bonaire, N.A and Swaziland, Africa (1969-1980), then through churches in the United States in both English and Portuguese and then through ministry in Israel (2005-2006). This ministry continues through local Bible studies and outreach to the world via the internet. I have written a book about my life from that of an orphan in Brazil to missionary in 5 countries. You can find out more on the "Book" page of our blog site.

One thought on “Sorrow Is Better Than Laughter”

  1. I read your post twice to take it in! Speaking as someone who is still grieving, and sorrowful at times, I can see the wisdom in not squashing down emotions of sadness, sorrow, anguish and the like. Allowing them to vent via your face, as it were, IS good for your heart. The stress is being released from the body….”for by sadness of face the heart is made glad; for a sad countenance is good for the heart (Ecl. 7:3)” I think the Lord provides comfort in our sorrow and showing that sorrow ALLOWS him to provide the comfort. I think it’s also true that when everything is going well and we’re happy, we can sometimes forget to include the Lord in our joyfulness and be thankful.


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