Baby Laughter

Is anything too hard for the Lord?  Genesis 18:14


Sarah shall bear you a son; and you are to name him Isaac [he laughs].  Genesis 17:19

Isaac was a darling baby boy. His name was extra special because God chose his name. Mom and Dad didn’t care ~ they were still too stunned at the very prospect of having a baby of their own. He would be their only child together. But let’s drop back and pick up the story.

How in the world could a baby be conceived at their age? They were dumbfounded at the news even though it had been hand-delivered from heaven. Sitting at her kitchen table Sarah could hear the conversation outside around the camp fire. With just animal skins separating her from the conversation, she could clearly hear what was being said. So startled and probably in denial she laughed. I probably would have too, to be honest. After all Sarah was no spring chicken.

The Bible tells us in Genesis that Sarah was 90 and her husband 99 years of age when it was announced that they were finally to be parents. Long before, God had told Abraham that he would have so many descendants that they would resemble grains of sand on the seashore. At that point they were both young and full of life so the thought of being parents “soon” filled them with joy. But the joy began to evaporate as the years rolled by.

Can you picture yourself pregnant at the age of 90? Stooped, wrinkled and tottery, Sarah was about to trade in her walker for a stroller and deliver her child on the geriatric ward. How absurd! Paparazzi would be camped outside the hospital for days in advance and the story would fill the tabloids with book and movie deals in the works. What a picture!

I would imagine it took these soon-to-be parents time to adjust to the news long after their visitors left. Laughter. His name would be Isaac which means laughter. God knew their reaction and that Sarah would laugh. Perhaps there is a connection? At any rate they would never forget this day or the ones to follow ~ providing Alzheimer’s Disease did not sneak up on them, but the Bible records the story as it unfolds.

I did not pick out baby names based on the origin, did you? Back in those days, they did. I have since looked up the meaning of the names of my children and it is something to ponder.

This story may be humorless for you today. You may be too close to loss to be impacted by humor. I understand. I look back to a time when I could not listen to music or had any thoughts or pictures in my mind that weren’t laced with bitterness and pain. If you are there, I am so sorry for your suffering. We have a time of it, don’t we? But if my journey mirrors yours I can tell you that time ~ lots of time ~ will eventually bring back some sweetness to soften the bitter edges of your life. I think tragedy is forever bittersweet; I suspect it is a given, but time helps us focus on the bigger picture. Somehow we go on. We travel with those who have similar experiences and we lean on the Lord for strength if you include Him in your life.

Perhaps an important point of this treasured story is that Abraham and Sarah had given up. They had lost all hope of becoming parents and even thought to take the matter into their own hands instead of waiting on God to deliver on His promise. You can read the interesting twists in this “soap opera” story. It’s a page turner. But God never promises what He can’t deliver. When it became obvious that conception would be a miracle God stepped in and the impossible becomes possible, right on time. Baby Isaac was a miracle baby. I am sure his parents often told him about his beginnings and his story was recorded for all of us to read and be reminded that we never give up on God, but instead cling to His promises of hope.

Be strong and let your heart take courage, all you who wait for and hope for and expect the Lord!  Psalm 31:24, AMP



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