When I first started teaching I did not attend any after school events. Whenever someone would talk about the parties or a 'get-together' they would mention how drunk someone became or how someone did such-n-such... it just didn't seem like the place I wanted to be.
Then one year, something happened. One year I decided to help plan our staff Christmas Party and the result was drastically different.
Where once there was an event where only a few participated- with drinking and rowdiness- there was suddenly an event where there was laughing, games, and fun without people needing to get drunk... and anyone who did get something to drink seemed almost out of place. Suddenly our staff parties were fun for everyone.
As long as I worked at my last school, I was always asked to be part of the party planning.
I owe this to the gift of laughter. Why? Because laughter is the outpouring of joyfulness. There is an old chorus that talks about all the things God could have put into our soul, but He chose laughter.
Just think about it for a minute. The ability to laugh. The ability to find joy in the most ordinary and mundane things. So many people in our world do not have joy. I think that is why our staff parties where such a success when I helped plan them. Not because I am something special, but because suddenly there was genuine laughter- not some drunken induced state of unawareness.
I look back through my own life and there are so many times when I was able to laugh and I shouldn't have been able to do so. So many times God has allowed me to 'release' through laughter and then everything suddenly seems a little better.
As I was growing up our home was filled with laughter. If we didn't laugh at ourselves then someone else would! Laughing at yourself was a very important lesson indeed... one both my parents took the liberty in helping to teach. Every family needs to have laughter; inside jokes; funny stories; funny glances with hidden meanings; all of these make life so much 'funner'!
Thank you, Jesus, for the gift of laughter!