Wednesday’s Word: Laughter!


“They” say laughter is good medicine. If that’s true, then being around me must good for other people’s health. Because I make people laugh. Sometimes they laugh with me—other times at me. But it’s laughter all the same.

I remember a conversation I had with one of our foster boys. He got in a fight with another boy. A careless comment ended up coming to blows. As I pulled the details out of him, I uncovered some humor he had missed. We take ourselves to seriously. I pointed out the ridiculous statement that had been made and we both had a good laugh.

On a different occasion I was the one who needed to laugh. I recognized the comedy in the moment, but wouldn’t allow myself to laugh. Instead I adopted a controlling, dominant parent. It was awful—for both my daughter and myself. Laughter would have been much better than humble pie that day.

Perhaps it’s easier for me to find humor because it’s easier for me to see good, and find joy.

I hope you’re able to uncover plenty of reasons to laugh today.

Hopefully Devoted: You must be…


14 Yes, the body has many different parts, not just one part. 15 If the foot says, “I am not a part of the body because I am not a hand,” that does not make it any less a part of the body. 16 And if the ear says, “I am not part of the body because I am not an eye,” would that make it any less a part of the body? 17 If the whole body were an eye, how would you hear? Or if your whole body were an ear, how would you smell anything?

18 But our bodies have many parts, and God has put each part just where he wants it. 19 How strange a body would be if it had only one part! 20 Yes, there are many parts, but only one body (1 Corinthians 12:14-20, NLT).

I had a very unusual interview this week. I will confess I was taken aback initially—it wasn’t what I expected—but I love the way it turned out!

As is my typical fashion, I showed up early. I always allow extra time for getting lost or behind a slow moving vehicle. Thankfully neither of those things were going to be an issue since the interview was just a couple blocks from my church office.

Well, I sort of got lost since I went to the wrong office suite first, and then couldn’t find the other in the maze of office suites.

When I finally made my way to the correct location, I was warmly welcomed by the coordinator of the interview. Ah, I felt my anxiety drop a couple notches.

Then it happened. One of the people in the group area looked at me and said, “You must be Tina.”

I stopped dead in my tracks and said (in an exaggerated and goofy manner), “Oh darn. I thought I was going to get to be someone else today.”

Fortunately she laughed and others joined in.

Sometimes I forget how to be serious.

But that is who I am. If you’re going to tell me I must be me, then I will. And Tina finds the humor in almost every situation.

I use humor to diffuse. I use humor to deflect. I use humor to get close. I use humor to disarm. I use humor to adjust perspective.

Please understand, I know how to weep—because there’s a time for that. I know how to lament—because crying out to God is necessary and healthy. I know how to be quiet, and serious, and respectfully silent. I can do those things…and do.

But God wired me to find the levity. God made me light-hearted. God made me. So I must be.

I guess in the body of Christ, I’m the funny bone. Not that I’m always funny or telling jokes. In fact I’m horrible at telling jokes—I always mess up the punchline.

Have you heard the old saying, “Rings on her fingers, bells on her toes, she shall have music wherever she goes”? I won’t always have music, but I will have laughter.

In the scripture quoted above, Paul is trying to help the Corinthian church understand the body of Christ, what we might identify as the church. They were caught up in valuing certain gifts and talents above others. Paul wanted them to see how all the gifts/talents are necessary, and in fact placed right where God wants them to be.

So if you must be you—where are you in the body? How does God want to use you?

I like the way Dr. Suess put it:


Oh, and the interview went very well. I think I’m really going to enjoy working with this group of folks!


I don’t like spiders. I want to say I hate them, but tend to hold that emotion in strict reserve. Let’s just say I really dislike them immensely (and I am leaving that double adverb pattern in intentionally for emphasis). About the only spider I ever cared about was Charlotte, of the beloved children’s story, Charlotte’s Web. And that barely counts since she’s not real.

I believe that God could have easily used a spider to tempt Eve in the garden. They’re just that evil. Think about the sayings we associate with wicked creatures: “Oh what tangled webs we weave when first we practice to deceive”; or “Come into my parlor said the spider to the fly.” Even the prophet Isaiah understood this evil-natured beast when he described evil people who wove webs of deception to trap unsuspecting innocents (see Isaiah 59:5).

Several years ago my husband was watching a special about spiders on PBS or Animal Planet, and he learned that we are never more than three feet from a spider at any time. He was so intrigued by this tidbit that he told me immediately and has reminded me regularly ever since.

Upon learning about my ever-present nemesis, I began to make it clear that as long as I was not able to see the eight-legged imp, I was willing to co-exist. Foolishly, a bold furry wood variety attempted to challenge my conditions one morning at work. He actually charged at me. Consequently, he was very quickly judging the value of a well-placed book by its cover.

I am not sure if my dislike or my panic is reasonable…I’m not sure if I care.

Recently a new dimension to my loathing has bubbled up. I have never liked walking into a web. It’s creepy, and I’m never quite sure if the object of my disdain has hitched a ride. Once I finish untangling myself from the practically invisible strands of microscopic super glue, I then have do a full body search for free loaders. This process is typically accompanied by a dance that embarrasses my children and brings others to tears from laughter.

I, however, am not amused.

Now when I write one of these pieces it is usually because I have worked through the issue at hand. I have had an epiphany and delight in sharing. That is not the case here. I have just walked into too many webs and danced too many dances lately. And don’t ask my husband about how he had to rescue me from the monster arachnid that I found hiding in my lunch box…it was HUGE!

But I have no resolution. They aren’t going anywhere, and I truly doubt they care about my feelings. That hurts a bit, but I think I might be able to get past it.

Perhaps it’s true, misery loves company. My frustration will resonate with someone who reads this. I like knowing I’m not alone. The other thing I know is that someone else will laugh at my childish behavior. Now while I’m not overly thrilled about being laughed at (not thrilled, but very used to it), I do like knowing that I brightened someone’s day. The way I look at it, if laughter is good medicine, being around me is good for your health.

So in case your husband missed the special and has failed to remind you: remember, there is a web-producing, eight-legged, super glue spitting beastie lurking just beyond the length of your arm.

Have a nice day.

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