“Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy.” Psalm 126:2a (NIV)
Sunlight streamed through the windows of the small country church on another warm autumn Sunday morning, so typical in the south. Singing along to the opening praise songs, I tried to focus on the words and find my own heart of praise. I reminded myself of all the little joys in life. But I was weary of living in a disaster area, in the devastation and rebuilding, even then, as we approached the second Christmas season following Hurricane Katrina.
Absentmindedly, I sang along to the words to Mercy Me’s song, “I Can Only Imagine,” while I thought about a world of no weariness, no devastation, no hurricanes.
“Surrounded by Your Glory, what will my heart feel?
Will I dance for you, Jesus or in awe of You, be still?
Will I stand in Your presence, or to my knees will I fall?
Will I sing ‘Hallelujah!’? Will I be able to speak at all?”
As the note lingered in the air, a little girl somewhere behind me burst out in giggles, her laughter carrying above the music. The joy of that sound fit so perfectly, so beautifully, it brought tears to my eyes. I imagined not just dancing or singing, but yes, also laughing for joy, when surrounded by His glory.
Jesus, as we celebrate Christmas, let us dance and sing in your presence and let us laugh for joy, surrounded by your glory.