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Previous Challenge Entry
Topic: Laughter (10/18/04)

By Roberta Kittrell


In Genesis 17, when God reiterates the covenant He will make between Abram (Abraham) and Himself, Abraham listens as we so often do—failing to view life through God’s eyes. God told him He was going to bless Sarai (Sarah) and give him a son through her. He told Abraham she was going to be a mother of nations as was he a father of many nations. Like us when we are nervous and possibly don’t comprehend , Abraham laughed silently within his heart. Was this laughter of nervousness, of disbelief, and/or possibly of joy--if only this could be true?

God had first made the covenant with Abram much earlier. When things didn’t unfold as Abram and Sarai expected they should, they did as Eve. When questioned by the serpent during his tempting mankind, she embellished God’s instructions, adding to them and omitting some. Abram and Sarai did as we too often do—“leaned unto their own understanding” and took matters into their own hands, “helping” God fulfill His covenant. At Sarai’s urging (plus, perhaps, because of his own desire for a son, an heir), Abram had sired Ishmael through Sarai’s Egyptian handmaiden. Abraham now knew he was not sterile. It was obvious to all that Sarah was beyond the age of child bearing and barren.

Patient God continues on and tells Abraham that Ishmael is not the son. The son is to result from Abraham’s union with Sarah. Yes, he believed that God would do as He promised and make him the father of many nations. But God is emphatic that His Plan would involve only one that was a product of the union of Abraham and Sarah who was chronologically and physiologically way past the age of childbearing. Abraham laughs silently within his heart. However, as with everything, this was not hidden from God, nor was his unbelief. God tells him he is to name their son Isaac—meaning he laughs.

In Genesis 18, we see how Sarah, when she overhears God reiterating His covenant, reacts in the same way as Abraham. She knows he can sire a son; but her?!
Again, God is Total Awareness, and knows her reaction and thoughts. Like children who are caught in the act of doing something wrong, she responded to God with the oldest self-defense known to man—a lie of denial. Sarah’s laughter had been one of derision; she knew well her own body, and had endured for many years the derisiveness of others at her barrenness.

God, in His Great Patience, instructs them to consider not themselves, but Him—asking if anything was too hard for God. That set the framework wherein they both in faith were obedient unto Him. In His time, God blesses their union and Sarah conceives and bears Abraham a son. In obedience to God, Abraham names the God-ordained son Isaac.

Sarah then says, “God made me laugh, and all who hear will laugh with me.” (Gen.21:6, NKJV). She now laughs with great joy, and others rejoice with her. When all is well with the great patriarch, then things will also go well with them.

“Children’s children are the crown of old men, and the glory of children is their father.” (Proverbs 17:6, NKJV)

How refreshing can be laughter arising from the everyday occurrences with your children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. Sometimes it comes from what you hear, and other times from what you do not know. For instance….

A couple of years after my daughter and son-in-law were blessed by the December birth of their first grandson and I my first great-grandson, my daughter and granddaughter were having one of their daily councils via the phone.

Abruptly, my granddaughter interrupted the conversation with the startling admonishment which my daughter heard as “Johnathan, quit writing in your poo!” Envisioning a smelly mess, my daughter began to hastily end the conversation.

Imagine her amusement and laughter when she learned her grandson was starting to write in his “Winnie, the Pooh” book. Though many funny happenings have occurred in the years since, none have topped the “poo.”

### Roberta J. Kittrell – 10/22/2004 – copy right 2004

bio: The author is a grandmother and great-grandmother. To her, as with the Apostle Paul, “to live is Christ.” She receives the most joy from being used by God to lead persons to Him and His salvation and to make the Word plain to all His Children as they seek to grow in Him.

Member Comments
Member Date
Joyce Poet10/25/04
Roberta, this was heartwarming to read! Grandchildren... what a joy!
Teresa Lee Rainey10/26/04
Roberta, this was a great lesson. Love that you ended with such a fun story. :^)
L.M. Lee10/29/04
the joy that children bring is beyond laughter!
Lucian Thompson10/30/04
Bobbie, this was a joy to read. Loved the Poo deal. Well done.
darlene hight10/30/04
Poor poo!He is very misunderstood. Nice entry.Great minds thind alike.
Karen Treharne10/30/04
Bobbi, thank you for reading my laughing article. This was a very fun read, and also well-documented. Our children say amazing things that are so often a cause of joy and laughter. Thank you for sharing about yours. In Christ's name, Karen