Lament and mourn and weep! Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he will lift you up.
James 4:9-10 (NKJV)
Not much is certain in life. Investments rise and fall in value. Relationships ebb and flow like the tide. God's Word says that we should not boast about tomorrow, "whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow." (James 4:14) Rather than boasting about tomorrow, thinking we've got everything figured out, James 4:15 says we should remember that we are only given in life what God wills us to have. Its too bad we can't know in advance what God intends for us to have!
When life doesn't go our way, we have some choices to make. We can brush off the circumstance, and keep going on as if nothing ever happened or we can examine what rocked our world and try to learn from the experience. I think that the above passage is talking about this type of self-reflection, an intentional look inward to our innermost thoughts to see how we stack up to God's standard. In this, we ourselves turn our laughter into mourning. Life is serious business, and sometimes we have to temporarily leave our care-free existence behind in order to live more intentionally the way God would have us to live.
I've recently had my world "rocked". The situation itself has turned some, but not all, of my laughter into mourning and I have also chosen to intentionally do the same as I reflect on my attitudes and behavior and how they impact those around me. As the psalmist writes in Ps 18:14, I pray "Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my strength and my Redeemer." Today, I sit humbled before the Lord, waiting on His promise to lift me up. He promises to lift us up. He will turn our mourning back to laughter.
1) When was the last time you asked God to reveal to you where you need to change?
2) How do you react to bumps in your road of life? Is there something you need to change about yourself?
Janna Rust is a Professional Coach and Speaker dedicated to encouraging others towards lives God intends for them. For more information, visit her at www.purposefulpartnerships.com.