Recently it seems that God throws an idea in my head and just lets me think about it and absorb it. This morning, that idea is humor.
There is alot of people that condem things that people enjoy. And I can't say that I can totally disagree with them. There are also times that people condem humor because it's not the right place or the right time. I think in many of these cases, God may disagree.
In case you haven't heard by now, Steve Irwin (The Croc Hunter) was killed. There is a post on slashdot regarding it and the comments have turned into somewhat of a war. People are making jokes about the situation, and others are condeming those that are making jokes. One thing that many people were noting is that Steve was always someone who enjoyed what he did and always wanted others to enjoy it. He used alot of humor. I never watched him much, but from what I do know about him, he does seem like the kind of guy that would want everyone to be laughing about the situation. When anyone dies, it is a sad thing.
This all actually goes hand in hand with another thing that God has really been laying on my heart. It is always important for us to make the best out of any situation. One thing God gave me was the vision of waves. Think of the waves rolling in out of the ocean and the force behind those waves. Huge waves such as tsunamis have great force and can wipe out entire communities. It all depends on who you talk to regarding waves. Victims of tsunamis may be scared of them.... but ask a Hawaian surfer about the waves and they'll tell you something totally different. Think about surfing. The whole idea of surfing is taking an uncontrollable power and using it for something enjoyable. Riding on top of the waves is a whole lot better than being crushed under them. I think this is the way we need to view the bad things that happen to us.
It's never fun when your heart gets crushed or when someone dies. It's never fun to go through alot of the things we go through as humans.... but if we can only find a way to ride on top of those uncontrolable forces, we will still be able to enjoy life. Alternatively, we can just stand out there in the ocean just letting wave after wave crush us.
I think all of this has a great link to humor. Last night I watched World Trade Center and one thing that really stood out in my mind was when the two port authority officers were trapped under the rubble, they made alot of jokes to each other. They laughed and they tried to have as much fun as they could in the situation. I can not say that they had an enjoyable time but it sure was a lot better if they just layed there in silence or layed there arguing with why God would let such a thing happen to them.
Humor is an incredible tool that we have been given. Do people pervert humor? Sure... but I dont think its up to us (as adults) to condem another adult by the type of humor they enjoy. This was something else God layed on my heart as I watched a couple episodes of Family Guy today. I enjoy it.... sure, there is some things in their shows that I may not agree with but being able to laugh at it is a healthy thing. Each person is convincted by God in different ways for different reasons and it's not up to us to tell someone else where they should draw the lines.
Don't get me wrong... there are things that are obviously over the line. When someone is being damaged by the humor, then there is a problem. Certain sexual humor that is designed to arouse someone or exploit someone is a problem. I'm not talking about someone crying about someone making a joke that they dont agree with. I'm not even talking about some jokes that are declared racist because one person is upset. I'm a white guy and I can't dance.... take that and have fun with it. I'm not going to be offended unless the joke is intended to be detrimental to me. Come to think of it, why is it that black people using the "n" word is ok but yet a white person uses it and its offensive? Quite simply, I think its because it's the source. It's a human emotion to defende those that are like you so coming from the same race you know that it's not meant to be harmful... coming from another race, you're not as sure.
It goes back to the common sense that God has given us. Humor is a gift of God just as much as the differences between us is a gift. We need to learn how to use humor in better ways and accept things as jokes and laugh about things that we don't neccesarily laugh about. Sometimes when humor "isnt the right time or place" it often is exactly where we need humor the most.
I know when I die it would be my hope that people can gather at my funeral and actually be able to laugh about things. Sure, I hope that I will have been a person that made an impact on enough people that there is mourning.... but I dont want people to be consumed by that mourning. Laugh about things.... enjoy the presence of each other that my death actually brought together.
There is always sadness in our lives. Things are going to hurt. We're going to lose people that mean alot to us. People will come into our lives only for a short time.... disasters will occur and sin will engulf all of us at one time or another. These are things that are part of our lives but we really need to ride these things out on top of the waves whether than stand in the ocean just being beat time after time from another wave. Waves come and then there is peace.... more waves come... and there is more peace. Lets use each wave to teach us how to surf.... then when teh storm comes and there are more waves than we could stand in, we'll be ready to ride those waves on top.