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Please engrave what you’ve realized upon your heart to share fragrances of Zion.

Sarah’s Laughter and Zion

In the Bible, Abraham represents God the Father (Lk 16:19–31). Isaac, who inherited his estate, represents us, God’s children—the children of promise (Gal 4:28). And Sarah, Abraham’s wife and Isaac’s mother, stands for our Mother who is the reality of the new covenant (Gal 4:21–26).

Since God has established Zion—the city of truth—in this dark and heartless world, the power of Satan is gradually fading away, while Zion is overflowing with joy and gladness, thanksgiving and the sound of singing every day (Isa 51:3). We have met our Heavenly Father and Mother in Zion. So, we should always be joyful and make our Heavenly Mother happy just as Sarah was so happy to have her own son Isaac that she smiled and laughed with delight every day.

Effects of a mother’s smile on her child


A public opinion research organization conducted a survey of mothers, asking them, “What’s your happiest moment that keeps you smiling and laughing?” Most of them answered, “It’s when my child laughs.” The organization asked the children the same question, and most of them answered, “It’s when my parents smile.” Our Heavenly Father and Mother take great delight in us (Zep 3:17–18). When we give joy to our Heavenly Parents who have sacrificed Themselves for us up until this very day, we ourselves can truly be joyful as well.

Some people once conducted an experiment to find out what effect a mother’s smile had on her child. They placed a baby in front of a heavy sheet of glass over an apparent drop-off—an experimental apparatus that creates the visual illusion of a cliff between one horizontal surface and another. Then they had the baby’s mother stand on the other side.

According to their request, the mother looked at her baby with a blank and stiff face at first. Looking at the mom across the table, the baby began to crawl toward her. However, at the appearance of a sudden drop-off in the center of the glass table, the baby stopped by instinct to avoid the danger. The baby hesitated whether to go on or not, and he finally returned to the starting point as he saw his mom’s blank face.

This time, the mother changed her facial expression while still standing at the same spot. When she gave her baby a big smile, he started to crawl toward her on the other side. After a while, the baby reached the edge of the apparent drop-off and looked down as he did the first time. However, the baby acted differently this time. As his mom was looking at him with a bright smile on the other side, he crossed the visual cliff quickly to reach her.

Like that, a mother’s smile gives her child courage. Babies behave according to their instincts, not according to their artificially acquired knowledge. In the experiment, the baby crawled towards his mom without hesitation, risking the danger of the visual cliff, when he saw his mom’s bright smile. This shows how greatly a mother’s smile affects her child.

To smile is another command of God


The importance of smiling is emphasized not only by people in the world, but the Bible also tells us that it is God’s will for us to be joyful always.

1 Th 5:15–18 Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always try to be kind to each other and to everyone else. Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

“Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances.” This means that we should be joyful, pray and give thanks in any and every situation, not only when we are in favorable circumstances. This is God’s will for us, and it is a command that God has given us. We must also put this command into practice, as God’s people who obey God’s commandments.

If we depend on God through prayer and try to find factors to be joyful and thankful for even when we are in situations that seem difficult, we will surely get good results which we can truly be joyful and grateful for. Thinking of the scene where Sarah was overwhelmed with joy at the birth of Isaac, let us too make efforts to please our Heavenly Mother, the spiritual Sarah, as Her children.

Ge 21:2–7 Sarah became pregnant and bore a son to Abraham in his old age, at the very time God had promised him. Abraham gave the name Isaac to the son Sarah bore him . . . Abraham was a hundred years old when his son Isaac was born to him. Sarah said, “God has brought me laughter, and everyone who hears about this will laugh with me.” And she added, “Who would have said to Abraham that Sarah would nurse children? Yet I have borne him a son in his old age.”

God had promised Abraham in advance that Sarah would bear him a son, and told that he would call him “Isaac,” meaning “laughter” (Ge 17:19). Just as God had said, Sarah bore a son to Abraham and said, “God has brought me laughter, and everyone who hears about this will laugh with me.” By this she meant that God brought her laughter through Isaac whom she had in her old age, and that the people around her would congratulate her on the birth of her son and rejoice with her.

Looking at Isaac always brought a smile and laugh to Sarah’s face. The Bible reminds us that just as Isaac was the source of laughter for his mother Sarah, we should become a source of laughter for our Heavenly Mother, the spiritual Sarah.

Joy is the fruit of the Spirit


Zion is the place where our Mother, the heavenly Jerusalem, dwells with us (Isa 33:20–24). It is undesirable to put on a gloomy face in Zion where God dwells and bestows blessings on us. Doesn’t everyone feel happy when they receive a blessing? If God’s people always look angry and seem to be in a bad mood, those who do not believe in God will think dubiously, ‘They say whoever believes in God will be blessed. So, why are the faces of the blessed people so gloomy?’

Since we are saved and going to heaven, let us fill ourselves with joy all the time so that we can fully please our Heavenly Father and Mother. Those who have received the Holy Spirit also try to change their personality for the better.

Gal 5:16–24 So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature. For the sinful nature desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the sinful nature. They are in conflict with each other, so that you do not do what you want . . . The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires.

The desires of the sinful nature become a factor that makes us act contrary to the will of the Holy Spirit. If we try to gratify the desires of the sinful nature, it brings forth strife and factions among us and also causes ungracious things to happen. That’s why Christians crucify the sinful nature with its passions and desires.

Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control—all these things are the fruits of the Spirit. Joy and gladness are included in the fruits of the Spirit. Those who have received the Holy Spirit practice these fruits of the Spirit. They have joy and gladness, and it naturally brings them laughter.

Zion where joy overflows while sorrow and sighing flee away


In Zion our Heavenly Mother is with us, always smiling at us, and we the children of Mother also learn to smile as we see Mother’s smiling face and laugh together. That’s why everlasting joy and gladness overtake us, the people of Zion, while sorrow and sighing flee away from us.

Isa 35:5–10 Then will the eyes of the blind be opened and the ears of the deaf unstopped. Then will the lame leap like a deer, and the mute tongue shout for joy. Water will gush forth in the wilderness and streams in the desert. The burning sand will become a pool, the thirsty ground bubbling springs. In the haunts where jackals once lay, grass and reeds and papyrus will grow. And a highway will be there; it will be called the Way of Holiness. The unclean will not journey on it; it will be for those who walk in that Way . . . and the ransomed of the L ORD will return. They will enter Zion with singing; everlasting joy will crown their heads. Gladness and joy will overtake them, and sorrow and sighing will flee away.

Every Zion around the world must be a joyful place full of Heavenly Father and Mother’s love. Of course, the commandment of the Sabbath is important, too, but it is also God’s pleasing will for us to smile and laugh because the Bible says, “Be joyful always . . . for this is God’s will for you.” Let us keep this in mind.

Ps 126:1–6 When the LORD brought back the captives to Zion, we were like men who dreamed. Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy . . . The LORD has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy. Restore our fortunes, O LORD , like streams in the Negev. Those who sow in tears will reap with songs of joy. He who goes out weeping, carrying seed to sow, will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with him.

Isa 61:3 . . . provide for those who grieve in Zion—to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of his splendor.


God said He would give the people of Zion joy and gladness instead of grief, a song of praise instead of sorrow. God bestows all these blessings on us in Zion.

As we live in this troublesome world, sometimes we feel sad and worried, don’t we? We are all sinners who committed sin in heaven and have been cast down to the earth. So, our life on earth is not always joyful. As the old saying goes, “More money, more problems!” the rich suffer many troubles because they have much and the poor suffer difficulties because they do not have enough to live on. This is the kind of life that most people live on this earth.

God told us to be joyful even in the midst of such difficult situations. In obedience to the will of God, we should try to find factors to be joyful and thankful for, even in difficulties, as the wise children of God.

The kingdom of God comes amid joy


God, who brought Sarah laughter through Isaac, has brought us laughter, too. We committed mortal sins in heaven and were destined to eternal death, but through the holy sacrifice of God we have received the forgiveness of sins so that we can enjoy the glory of salvation. We have found our spiritual Father and Mother and our spiritual brothers and sisters as well. Since God has opened the way for us to go back to heaven—our home—which we once lost, how joyful and grateful we should be!

Being always joyful and thankful, let us become the light in this world full of sorrow and anxiety, as God’s children. Sometimes we may suffer from financial difficulties or environmental problems. However, we have the kingdom of heaven to go and the promise of a bright future as well. The Bible tells us to be joyful and thankful for that.

Ro 14:17–20 For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and approved by men. Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification . . .

God has given us the gift of a smile as a commandment. He has told us to be joyful always, saying that the kingdom of God is righteousness, peace, and joy. If the kingdom of God is within us and we fully serve our Heavenly Father and Mother, how can we be filled with anxiety and sorrow instead of joy and gladness?

When a mother wears a stiff, poker face, her child attempts to approach her at first but soon stops and crawls away from her. If a woman has a stone-cold face no matter how beautiful she is, people turn their backs on her though they come close to her at first.

I hope that kind of thing will never happen in Zion. If a mother wears a smile on her face, her baby keeps crawling towards her although there is an obstacle in front. Everyone wants to approach the person who is full of joy. Sometimes in our lives, we may encounter things that make us feel sad, troubled and discouraged. Let us remove all our sorrows and worries through the Holy Spirit and bring a smile and laughter to our Heavenly Mother’s face.

Gal 4:28–31 Now you, brothers, like Isaac, are children of promise. At that time the son born in the ordinary way persecuted the son born by the power of the Spirit. It is the same now. But what does the Scripture say? “Get rid of the slave woman and her son, for the slave woman’s son will never share in the inheritance with the free woman’s son.” Therefore, brothers, we are not children of the slave woman, but of the free woman.

Sarah’s son, Isaac, was the absolute most precious treasure for her. Ishmael and everyone else who persecuted Isaac incurred Sarah’s wrath and ended up being driven away.

Isaac was indeed a continuous source of laugher for Sarah. We, too, should bring a smile to our Heavenly Mother’s face by quickly finding our lost brothers and sisters, so that all Her children like Isaac will come back into Her arms. Moreover, we the people of Zion who have returned into Mother’s arms earlier should always be joyful according to God’s word, so our brothers and sisters who come later can smile and laugh a lot.

Let us smile at each other, and share joy and gratitude with one another as much as possible. Zion must be a place where everyone, regardless of gender, age or position, always feels happy, overflowing with joy and blessings.

To make Zion such a joyful place, we need to find many of our lost brothers and sisters, who will bring a brighter smile and more laughter to Mother just like Isaac did for Sarah. Shouldn’t we lead our brothers and sisters quickly back to Zion so we can all proceed together towards heaven, our eternal home? I would like to ask all you brothers and sisters in Zion to do your best to find our lost heavenly family members and to please and thank our Father and Mother fully today, too.