I stood behind a woman in Walmart and God taught me a lesson. It’s fair to say God teaches me many lessons at Walmart. There are such interesting people there!
The woman checking out grumbled about everything.
- She complained about some do-dad she couldn’t find in the hardware department.
- She whined about the store being too hot.
- She had a fit over the price for a carton of eggs.
- She fussed that her daughters braids were a mess and “I didn’t raise you to look like a pig!”
- She grumbled about her husband who was sitting out in the car (who’d blame him!) when “he should be in here helping me.”
Trying to lift her spirits, the poor checkout girl ended the transaction with a cheerful “Have a nice day, Ma’am!”
“Yeah, right,” the nasty lady said. “Not likely.”
And it was then I noticed the “Jesus First” pin on her shirt collar.
Another “Christian Loonie” for all Walmart to see.
I wanted to shake her and say, “Lady, if Jesus is really first, why don’t you act like it?”
I think the world is soooooo hungry for authentic Christianity—for people who are full of faith, courage and vision. And yes, JOY too!
It might surprise you to know John Calvin, an influential French theologian and pastor during the Protestant Reformation, once said, “We are nowhere forbidden to laugh….” *
Calvin would remind us God created laughter. It’s a good thing. Clean humor is a godly thing.
So why don’t more Christians laugh?
Christian comedian Dennis Swanberg says, “It’s almost as if those folks think, ‘If I’m not suffering, I’m not doing this Christian thing right. I’d better not ever look like I’m having fun.'” **
I’ve found when I’m not responding to the circumstances of life in a godly way—when I am selfish, angry, prideful, discontent, stressing my own rights—it’s pretty hard to express joy.
Joy is part of the “fruit” of the Spirit, and Galatians 5:22-23 says there is “no law” against this fruit! Joy is one of the evidences that the Holy Spirit is working in and through us. If we’re not exhibiting joy, we may need to consider whether we are yielding to the Spirit’s control in obedience to the Word of God (Romans 8:14; Galatians 5:18).
Life can get tough. Though we’re not forbidden to laugh, it just might not be possible sometimes. But we can always be filled with true joy that comes from a close walk with God.
Have you laughed at something funny today? Here’s some clean humor for women, a short video by Chonda Pierce called “The Truth.”
* Calvin was writing about Christian Liberty–Institutes of the Christian Religion, III, 19, 9