Tag Archives: Humor

No ‘Slice and Dice’ Words!

10 Jun

A pair of chickens walks up to the circulation desk at a public library and say, “Buk Buk BUK.” The librarian decides the chickens want three books, so gives them three.

Around midday, the two chickens come back, quite vexed, and say, “Buk Buk BukKOOK!” The librarian gives them another three books.

Later in the afternoon, the two chickens return, looking very annoyed, and say, “Buk Buk Buk BukKOOOOK!” Suspicious now, the librarian gives them several more books and decides to follow them.

She follows them out of the library, into a park and down to a pond. Hiding behind a tree, she gasps as the two chickens throw the books at a frog.

They cackle in fury when he says, “Rrredit. Rrredit. Rrredit.”

LOL, right?

This next paragraph is so off track from where I’m heading today, but I’m weird about weird facts. Weird, huh?

As I was looking for photos and found the one of the chicken (above), I noticed a question on a blog that was posted at the Whizbang Chicken Pluckers group. According to the blog, The Deliberate Agrarian, someone was looking for enough chicken feathers to “tar and feather” someone for a university production of “Big River.” She needed about 9,000 feathers (about two feathers per square inch of the character).  She  found on the Internet that a chicken has about 8,000 feathers. Someone actually volunteered to send him some! Can you just imagine that student who got tarred and feathered for the sake of a play?

But anyway … the opening joke about the two chickens is actually the closing joke in a humor column that Stephanie Prichard wrote for The Christian Pulse called “Jes Jokin.'” Stephanie writes a humorous grammar column for the American Christian Fiction Writers Journal and is co-authoring an adventure-suspense trilogy with her husband. But I have enjoyed her many humorous insights at The Christian Pulse.

I wrote Stephanie that I couldn’t believe the good timing of her words. I was in the middle of writing a post about humorous words ~ how they can be harmful ~ and there, in the middle of her piece were these words:

“We can hurt and be hurt when humor is used as a weapon.

“But, properly used, humor pleases God.”

You go, Girl! Totally true. In recent years, I’ve realized that joy doesn’t have to be kept inside (where some Christians say it belongs), but it can pop out in laughter, chuckling, and good, clean humor. I agree with Stephanie that “properly used, humor pleases God.” He created it, after all, along with all our other good, clean, positive  emotions.

But I, for those nasty, weapon-like words, have a different mental image. Continue reading

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Some ‘Sick’ Humor

29 Apr

I think my friend Rhonda Rhea (1) has captured the award for “Sick” Humor. Her recent posts on Facebook made me LOL!

Rhonda wrote, “NyQuil and ice cream. Yeah, what could get a person over a cold faster than a NyQuil float?”

She also wrote, “Carpe Diem-e-tapp. Sneeze the Day!”

I’ve often heard people say that laughter is the best medicine. The Bible says something like that (Proverbs 17:22). A happy, cheerful heart is “good medicine,” healing the soul. It diffuses stress, exercises the heart and lungs, increases oxygen consumption, reduces carbon dioxide in the lungs, relaxes muscles, and blesses the body in many other ways.

I read a story about a “humor cart” at Lutheran General Children’s Hospital (Park Ridge, Chicago area) that helps sick children laugh. (2)

Wearing a set of bobbing antennae, a retired teacher, Cathy Risberg, pushes the cart laden with toys, coloring books and other silly trinkets, but it’s the jokes that make the children smile and giggle… silly jokes that children love, like this one:

“Why did the boy throw the butter out the window?”

“I don’t know.”

“So he could see a butterfly!”

Melodie Merrick, clinical manager of pediatrics at the hospital said, “Laughter releases endorphins, and that helps us feel better and heal. It decreases anxiety and can mean less pain medicine. It takes a kid away from a fear of the hospital, and that’s important to building a trusting relationship.”

Because the Bible says there is “a time to laugh” (Ecclesiastes 3:4), we can look for opportunities God gives us. Laughter is coupled to joy ~ especially joy when we observe God’s creative works ~ in Psalm 126:2-3.

I have to admit that hearty laughter has pulled me through many stressful seasons of life. And I’m in good company. I read that Abraham Lincoln said he could only handle the stresses of the Civil War by cultivating lightness of heart: “If it hadn’t been for laughter,” he said, “I could not have made it.” Likewise, comedians often say they learned to cope with their problem childhoods by cultivating a sense of humor and helping others laugh more, too.

A Jewish proverb says, “What soap is to the body, laughter is to the soul.” Yes, I’ve washed away many gloomy days with a good scrubbing of clean humor, especially since I started cultivating a LOL heart.

The story about the hospital’s “humor cart” was sweet, but it was Risberg’s final statement that arrested my attention.Smile Note

“Most of (the children) can smile,” she said, “and those who can’t, I make sure I’m smiling at them.”

Ah… the power of a smile.  I thought about all the people ~ and not only children ~ that I encountered just this past week. So many of them were sad, depressed, frustrated, lonely. No smiles there.

But God allowed me to give them a great gift. I could share my smile with them. And sometimes I could add a word of encouragement, a silly joke, or a few moments to pray together. (I have this note near my desk.)

Yes, laughter is the best medicine, but a shared smile is a quick shot in the arm!

(1) Wants some laughs along with wisdom? Read How Many Lightbulbs Does It Take to Change A Person?: Bright Ideas for Delightful Transformation by Rhonda Rhea (New Hope Publishers, 2012)

(2) http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/health/2013617033_weblaugh10.html

Opening God’s Gift of Laughter

31 Aug

Mary Poppins visited a hotel and asked the receptionist for room service. She selected Cauliflower Cheese for Silhouette - Mary Poppinsher dinner, and decided to go ahead and order breakfast in bed for the next morning, too ~ a couple of poached eggs.

The next morning, as she checked out, the same receptionist asked her if she slept well.

“Yes, thank you.” Mary replied.

“Food to your liking?” the receptionist asked.

“Well, I have to say that the cauliflower cheese was exceptional. I don’t think I have had better. Shame about the eggs, though,” Mary replied truthfully.

“We are always looking to improve our service and would value your opinion,” the receptionist said. So Mary scribbled a comment into the Guest Comments book as she checked out. Curious, the receptionist picked up the book to read Mary’s comment:

“Supercauliflowercheesebuteggswerequiteatrocious!” (1)

Pam came across a devotional from Crosswalk recently. It was written by Leslie Snyder and titled “Laughter.”  Snyder wrote, “One of our family’s favorite songs is from the musical Mary Poppins. ‘I Love to Laugh‘ is sprinkled with laughter and often begins a contagious wave of the giggles. The lyrics give a bit of insight into this silly gift of laughter:

“When things strike me as funny, I can’t hide it inside
And squeak – as the squeakelers do – I’ve got to let go with a ho-ho-ho… And a ha-ha-ha…too!

“We love to laugh Loud and long and clear
We love to laugh So ev’rybody can hear
The more you laugh The more you fill with glee
And the more the glee The more we’re a merrier we.” (2)

Have you seen that scene?” As Ed Wynn, Dick Van Dyke, and Julie Andrews sang with infectious laughter, I (Dawn) laughed along with them. Who wouldn’t?  There’s nothing like joy and laughter ~ and of all people, Christians should be most joyous.

Over the past year, since the release of our book, LOL with God, I’ve thought about laughter a lot.  I’ve also considered the emotions of Jesus many times. Pam and I noted in our book (on pp. 241-242 ~ “The Last Laugh”), that we thought Jesus wasn’t just “a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief” (Isaiah 53:3), but He Jesus' Angerwas flesh and blood (John 1:14). He displayed real human emotions like righteous anger (Matthew 21:12-13; Mark 3:5) and sorrow (John 11:33-35).

Jesus felt things just like you and I do, but His emotions (unlike ours so often) were always based in His holy character; and, because of His dual nature, He didn’t see things as we see them.

As the Son of God, He grieved over things that we might miss, like His Jesus weepinganguish over the unbelief of Jerusalem (Luke 19:41), or His unusual sense of “joy” that came with eternal perspective. The Bible says, “for the joy that was set before him [Jesus] endured the cross” (Hebrews 12:2). Jesus rejoiced in his impending death because He “saw” the resurrection ahead and what it would mean for you and me!

We wrote in LOL with God, “Jesus, though fully God, was also fully human. He was an extraordinary human, and we think He must have had wonderful moments of laughter as He walked this earth.”

Wise Solomon said, in Ecclesiastes 3:3, “There is a time to weep and a time to laugh,” and surely Jesus knew that scripture.

Lazarus & His Sisters

Joy at Lazarus' Resurrection!

I love to imagine the wide swing of emotions He had at the death and resurrection of His friend, Lazarus, all within a short period of time (John 11:1-44). Imagine His pained, sorrowful expression, hearing of Lazarus’ death, perhaps smiling at Martha’s confession of faith (v. 27), being moved with compassion by her sister Mary’s words, weeping over Lazarus (vv. 29-35), and then the joy there must have been in restoring Lazarus to his precious sisters.

Although there is no scripture that is specific in saying Jesus laughed, on several occasions in His ministry He showed that He had a sense of humor when He made funny comparisons. He talked about a splinter versus a beam (Matthew 7:4) and a gnat versus a camel (Matthew 23:24)

Jesus led a purposeful life, and no doubt part of His manifestation of the glory of God was to show the complete joy of a right relationship with the Father and the outworking of His will. For example, Jesus expressed great joy when Continue reading

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