Sunday, July 8, 2012

Irreverently Reverent

I have a healthy respect (which is what reverence is all about) for laughter in all of its forms. Let's see, there's a snicker, a swallowed snort, a hideous shaking (in church, funerals, weddings - when you know you absolutely can't make a noise and cannot stop laughing to save your life), belly laughing, a crooked smile on some one's face that never laughs out loud, knee slapper, shoulder lifter, - can you think of others? If you can, please add yours in the comments section.  Let's do this together.

My mother didn't say so, but I think I was born laughing. Can you find humor in any situation. I can. Sometimes that's good, and often it can be bad; but that is a subject for another day. I talk to and laugh at myself all of the time. That way when someone else laughs at me, I already have a good attitude about it. I could give soooooo many examples right here, but I promised to make this blog a little bit shorter.

Laughter can turn sorrow into joy or melt anger. Like the time Frank and I were having a rather heated discussion in our kitchen. I meekly, in the most angelic voice (no raised eyebrows) quoted the Word of God (here comes the irreverent part of the blog) and said, "Frank, in Proverbs 15:1 it says, 'a soft answer turns away wrath, but grievous words stir up anger.'" He turned to me without batting an eye and said, "look up in Proverbs and see what it says about bitch-slap." Are you gasping? I hope you are laughing. I can't say that pleased the Lord at all; but He didn't strike Frank dead, and I don't believe He is passive aggressive. I can't tell you what we were fighting about, but I can tell you we ended up in raucous laughter. Our sense of humor is important. It sustains us, and it is definitely one of the reasons Frank and I are still married after 31 years. We have gone through heartbreak and sorrow like everyone else, but we have learned to enjoy one another and move on from bad situations. One of the many reasons we can do that is because we know how to find the humor in things and laugh.

My pastor says we are all either just coming out of a problem, right in the middle of a problem, or about to have a problem. While the Lord has promised joy, peace, strength for the day, and hope for tomorrow, He has never guaranteed there would not be suffering along the way. He has made us so wondrously with a well-rounded approach to dealing with anything that comes our way - spiritually, resting in Him so we don't literally kill ourselves worrying; mentally, filling our hearts with His Word so we know Him better and can trust Him more (who trusts someone they don't know?); and physically - with a merry heart and happy attitude that helps our mood and energy levels.

I love the verses, Proverbs 17:22 - "A merry heart doeth good like a medicine;" and Proverbs 15:13 - "A merry heart maketh a cheerful countenance, but by sorrow of the heart, the spirit is broken."  I develop and deliver training to adults so I often search the Internet for additional information on a variety of subjects.  Today was no different.  I googled, "medical benefits from laughter."  The first thing that came up was, "Marijuana heightens laughter - good for the healthy body."  For my purposes today, that was the wrong site, but I laughed.  While it wasn't the site I needed, it certainly proved the point of today's musing.

I leave you with just a few examples of what I found that thrills my soul and proves that the wisdom found in Christ confounds the wisdom of the world.  Scientists are amazed at the healing affects of laughter.  It reduces stress and blood pressure, boosts the immune system with cancer fighting antibodies, and engages every major system of the body.  It actually exercises the internal organs.  Hmmm, I think I just read that in Proverbs, written -  how many years ago? What a balm in laughter our Creator has provided to us.  Love to all, still approaching the day with joy.  Mecca

PS - It isn't one bit shorter, is it?