Sunday, January 18, 2015
The end of this week, I started reading through 1st Samuel in the Bible. I had never noticed this particular event quite like God showed me this time. The Philistines had just defeated Israel and had captured Israel's most holy and precious possession, the ark of the Covenant. The ark was the stone tablets that God had written on and given to Moses which always traveled with the Israelite people wherever they would go. Now, the Philistines were polytheists, meaning they believed and worshiped many gods. So when they captured the ark of the Covenant, they decided to place it in the temple of one of their gods named "Dagon", right next to some man made statue of him. The next morning, the people went into the temple and found Dagon lying prone on the ground in front of the ark. So they picked up their man made god and placed him back in his allotted spot. The following morning, they found Dagon once again prone before the ark but this time his hands and head had been broken off from his trunk.
It was at this point that I started laughing. I started picturing all the ways God could have done this. He could have just struck Dagon down from heaven both times, with the second time having a little more force. But that unfolding of events didn't fulfill my intrigued imagination quite as well as picturing an angel with a big smirk on his face, lifting Dagon off his pedestal and placing him on the ground. I can see him watching the next day and giggling at the faces of the unexpecting Philistines as they see their "god" worshiping the one true God. As the Philistines place Dagon back on his proper spot, I can see the face of the angel waiting with eager expectation for what he's allowed to do next. He takes Dagon and pulls him apart limb by limb and then finally pops off his little man made head. The next day he watches as the Philistines enter, mouths wide open in awe and fear as they see their "god" broken in pieces before the Lord Almighty. Oh, I would give more than a "penny for their thoughts" on that day.
I don't mean for one second to downplay the amazing power and sovereignty of God by laughing, but I believe God enjoys humor. I believe he also uses humor and laughter to teach us just as he uses sorrow and pain to help us grow in relationship with Him. In my job, I experience a lot of death, sorrow, frustrations, tense emotional conflicts, and pain. I know I deal with animals but with every animal there's a person and every person there is a story. I also experience a lot of joy, love, excitement, and silly moments but for some reason I allow them to be clouded out by the bad. Just 30 minutes prior to picking up my Bible and reading this story, I had asked God to show me to be more light hearted. To melt away all the sadness I had allowed to build up in my heart by His love and laughter. Then, he gives me this, an early morning comedy show sent by the Creator of the universe just to loosen me up. Praise be to God for creating laughter that has enough power to soothe the soul.