What’s so Funny?
We laughed so hard we couldn’t breathe. It was your typical giggle-fest where you get to the point where everything is hilarious and just increases the laughter. You cry. You try your best not to pee your pants. When it was finally over my ribs, my face, my throat and even the muscles in the back of my neck are sore from the ordeal.
This was a church meeting, mind you. A men’s gathering that was intended to be more serious, something to help us become more introspective and ultimately become better men, and understand how to live our faith more fully.
Instead, non stop, howling laughing.
This wasn’t one of those “holy” laughter things you hear about in some Pentecostal churches. This was good old fashioned funny stories from our lives.
We had an agenda for the meeting. We wanted to get to know each other better. Ultimately, the group is designed to help us grow spiritually and emotionally. Trust is crucial to that we spent time getting to know each other, setting the foundation for what is to come. We were asked to share something about ourselves that the others didn’t know.
I can’t share what we discussed. But when the first person to speak told us that he once was the quality control inspector at a breast pump factory, a few chuckles rolled out. Chuckles turned to guffaws and the night had a whole new agenda. Most of it sophomoric and gross. Enough so to pass for a meeting of sixth grade boys as we rattled off crazy story after crazy story that involved odd, embarrassing or even disgusting bathroom incidents.
By then, the laughter was far into the realm of unbridled. There was no way that it was coming back to something serious.
Later, as we were finally wrapping up, one of our number asked, “why can’t we have fun like this in church all the time?”
Which is a great question. Obviously, there are times when such humor is inappropriate. There are times when things need to be more serious; part our interaction with life as a church encompasses those bad, sad and even horrible times. Some things aren’t appropriate for certain audiences. But the truth of the matter is, we all have funny and embarrassing stories. They are part of life too. Why can’t they be part of Christian experience?
There are places where this kind of being real is good. Even important. There is a point when being goofy is necessary. I’ll even go so far as to say it’s holy.
The scriptures I read say that God found his creation good. Even the gross parts. Even the base parts. It’s the way he made it. Embrace it.