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The Blessings in Sorrows

Ecclesiastes 7: 3 “Frustration is better than laughter, because a sad face is good for the heart.”

The Bible contains some of the most puzzling statements and the above is one of them. I was puzzled by it because, from my vantage point, it seems to contradict some other statements in the Bible like Proverbs 17: 22, “Laughter does good like a medicine.” “How can ‘frustration’ be better than laughter?” I asked myself. “How can a sad face be good for the heart?” 

 Another word used for the same verse above in place of ‘frustration’ is ‘sorrow.’ “Sorrow is better than laughter.” 

We ask the question again; ‘how can sorrow be better than laughter?’ For me, it’s better to laugh than cry. However, we also have to admit that life is all about perspective. While laughter is a great tool God has given us to express joy and delight, the truth is that life is not all about laughter and joy. There are times of sorrow we go through and we cannot avoid them. But it is during those times of sorrow and grief that we reflect on our lives, our situation, and our own spiritual condition. While times of sorrow are not enjoyable, they can be the best times for us to change our ways, make improvements in our lives and draw closer to God. This is what Solomon meant by the statement above.

Look at verse 2 of the same chapter; “It is better to go to a house of mourning than go to a house of feasting.” Who wants to mourn? We all love to feast, don’t we? I thought a party is better than a funeral! Oh well, consider this! Many people come to Christ during funeral services than during times of partying. In fact, many people backslide during party times. Christmas is approaching and there will be a lot of parties and also a lot of backsliding. 

We learn more about life, God, and our own situations during the most sorrowful, painful, and darkest moments of our lives; not when we are feasting and laughing. This is just the plain truth! Our faith grows in those moments as well. And most of all, the most sorrowful moment can be the most blessed moment because that’s when you are forced to a corner and the ONLY THING TO DO IS TO LOOK TO GOD AND HANG ON TO HIM! That’s when God becomes more real than what you are going through.



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