Laughing, joking, teasing, and storytelling are some of the best experiences in life. They enrich our days, bind us to others, teach us, and make life sweet and endurable. They are gifts from God and fruits of humility and wonder, since they are only possible when we see the flaws of the world but content ourselves with the knowledge that even flaws have purpose in the plan of God. We can relax then and laugh, crack the joke, or tell the funny story because we know our seriousness changes nothing. God rules, and we are free to delight in this fact and use humor to endure the way things are while we await the perfection that is coming.

Genuine men understand the power and meaning of humor. Some have greater gifts for joking and storytelling than others, but all can at least understand why humor is important, what it does for the soul of the fearful and hurting, and why it is so essential to what a man is made to do. Humor allows us to lighten the heart, encourage our children when they fail, ease stress from our wives, motivate younger men, and unify friends. Humor also allows us to drain the terror from our souls before battle.

Psalm 126:2 (KJV) — Today's Verse for Friday, July 11, 2003

It can also be a tool for seizing the moment for a greater good.

Challenge: Take stock of your own sense of humor for a moment. Have you put this valuable gift in the service of anger, bitterness, and hate? Do you use humor only to wound and control? If so, clean it up. Repent before God, apologize to those you’ve damaged, and begin putting your gift for humor in the service of nobler ends.

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