Bible studies for writers

Bible studies for writers | Nehemiah 8

“Laughter through tears is my favorite emotion.” I just love that line from the movie “Steal Magnolias”. Dolly Parton (Truvy) said it in a scene where she and her gal pals witness a huge meltdown and then find ways to laugh and celebrate in the end. The Israelites’ reaction to what they saw as shortcomings and failures turned to joy just made my heart get all sappy. Have you ever experienced laughter through tears? I’ll ask you again in a minute!

I was reflecting on camping trips and get-togethers while reading the second part of this chapter. What a grand time they are! We used to have all kinds of family traditions when I was growing up. For a few years, we always celebrated Thanksgiving between our house and my Uncle Bob’s, which was just a block away. The family members from out of town would come in their campers or crash on couches and in spare bedrooms for several days. Another tradition we had as a family was decorating the Christmas tree. I think every American family has some kind of tradition that revolves around the Christmas tree. For us, it was stringing popcorn and making treats for the city workers and dragging out all the ornaments and going over their histories once again. However, as snuggly as these memories make my heart feel and as fun and meaningful as they were, they did not last. The house in which we used to decorate the tree and string the popcorn was sold years ago. Uncle Bob and several other relatives eventually died. And since then, while several new traditions have been born, most of them already have been abandoned just the same. We can look often at the Israelites’ lives like we look at our own lives. They all change and evolve in their own unique ways. They all ebb and flow with history and time. And while they can’t and never will be able to last forever, God grants us the blessings of our own memories, along with the recorded memories of others. And it’s in those things that we find reasons to rejoice and rekindle events that produce and propel even more blessings and meaningful memories.

Writing prompt: as promised

Write about a time you’ve experience laughter through tears, or think of a joyous tradition that no longer exists.


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