I realized today that I’ve been doing a lot of deep thinking these past few months (years?), and decided to unwind a bit. So, when I got home, I opened up my Netflix account and looked for something relatively mindless to watch. After all, I simply wanted relax my mind for a couple of hours.
I got about two minutes into one of the Captain America movies, and quickly realized that it wasn’t my cup of tea. I need some semblance of a plot in order to keep my mind engaged in the story, so I looked for something else.
After spending a few minutes browsing the titles on my Netflix list – movies and documentaries that I had put aside a long time ago, but never really took the time to watch – I found something that looked interesting and novel, so I thought, “let me try that.”
I’m here to tell you that not only was the movie remarkably well made and poignant (particularly for the season I’m going through in my life now), it had several laugh-out-loud moments. At one point, I was laughing so hard that I could barely utter a word. I paused the movie long enough to call my Mom and tell her about it, but then I got tickled again while leaving her a voicemail message that I had to hang up because I had laughed myself nearly breathless.
I understand that laughter doesn’t necessarily solve our problems, but for a short while, it helps you to forget about them (or puts them in the proper perspective). I realize how beneficial it is to get a hearty chuckle in every now and again, so I am determined to remember the things and experiences I’ve had that made me really laugh.
So here are a few things that make me laugh, in no particular order:
- Zootopia, Toy Story, or pretty much anything by Pixar. My goodness, Zootopia is still one of the funniest (yet remarkably stirring) animated films I’ve seen in awhile, and the scene with the sloths still cracks me up every time I see it.
- The things that little kids say. Since I volunteer in my church’s children’s ministry program, I am amazed at the hilarious things that the little ones say. One of my favorite memories was from earlier this year, when a bunch of the five- and six-year-old children in our classroom starting cracking jokes. Let me tell you that their timing, delivery, and delight (they often laughed at their own jokes) was so funny, that I laughed heartily at their jokes, too.
- Unexpected events that shouldn’t be funny, but are. Several years ago, my mother and I went to see the Nutcracker ballet at Christmas time, and it was nearing the end of the performance. Something unexpected clearly happened, because one of the ballerinas skidded off the stage quite dramatically. Hear me: I don’t mean that she existed stage left, but rather that she skidded off the stage. As in, fell off of it. Thankfully, she was fine – no injuries, as far as I can recall – but the sight of a ballerina teetering off the stage admittedly gave several of us in the audience quite a chuckle. At first it was like, “Did you see that….?” and then quickly turned into, “Is she alright?” and finally, once it was clear that the ballerina was a-ok, warm (yet respectful) chuckles.
- Similarly, when mobile phones go off at bizarre times. I was at the symphony a couple of years ago, and we had reached a critical time in the performance. Suddenly, all was quiet, and those of us in the audience waited expectantly for the arrival of the next note. Instead, what we heard tearing through the silence was a loud “choo, choo” sound from someone’s mobile phone – apparently, a member of the audience received a text message, and the device started making train-like “choo choo” sounds whenever a text message arrived. The sound was so loud that I’m sure that the members of the orchestra heard it, too!
- The video of the woman and her two bold young children interrupting a live BBC News interview will never stop being funny to me. Never, ever, ever.
I could go on and on, but I won’t (otherwise, this blog post will never end!). Simply recalling to mind the funny things in my past has already put me in a better mood. Surely, the Bible knows what it’s talking about where laughter and joy are concerned:
So the next time you feel led to have a good chuckle, do it. And if you haven’t done so recently, take a humor inventory and remember the things in your life that make you smile and/or laugh. It really can make all of the difference in how you feel!
Dear Lord, thank You for this simple reminder to not take life quite so seriously all the time. Thank You for the gift of laughter, and for placing a sense of humor inside all of us. I believe that You also have a sense of humor, and that You want Your children to enjoy life more in general. Laughter helps us to do just that! Remind me to laugh more (and forgive me for laughing when the ballerina skidded off the stage all of those years ago, but I will not lie – it was FUNNY, and You know it, too!). 😉 In Your name I pray, Amen.