At lunch yesterday, my friend expressed disatisfaction with a lawn care service she'd hired to clean-up her yard. Because my son is in the business, I mentioned it to him later. (I'm changing the names so I don't get sued!)
"My friend, Karen, said she had a bad experience with Roth Landscape."
Kyle gave me a weird look, "Who?"
"Roth landscape!" I said waving my hands in the air.
"Never heard of them."
That's when I knew I had the name wrong, and I started to laugh ... and laugh ..."
Now he's laughing, too--only at me!
"You know ... Roth Landscape? ... Uh, Rosen? ... Ur, Ruby? ..." Now I'm on the floor. Tears ... hoots ... gasps. He's just watching.
My children have learned to translate everything I say.
"You mean Bogart Nurseries?"
"Yah ... that's it! I was close..."
"Good grief," he said laughing, "You're unbelievable."
Laughter is the sound that Joy Makes.
I'm sure, at least, some of you can relate. You know ... like, have you ever looked at the dish of butter on the table and said, "Please pass the spinach..."? People look at you like you're nuts. My family's used to it.
Or looked at your grandson, ie. James, and called him Hazel? (I'm sure my family have contemplated name tags.)
Before you write me to say I should see a Neurologist, I've done this my whole life. One day, I was walking a lady to the dining hall at a retreat. I had my full, ministerial hat on. She was expressing regret that she would be leaving the conference mid-morning to take her daughter to the hearing specialist. It was a very sensitive moment.
"Please pray," she said. "My daughter is losing her hearing."
Being the compassionate one that I am, I replied, "Oh dear, is it a genital thing?"
We sputtered a bit, and then I bribed her with my dessert if she promised not to tell.
Then there's the time I was speaking in front of a group and everyone suddenly burst out laughing.
"Oh no, what did I say?" I asked the audience.
A lady stood up and said, "You said you've been married two years and you have forty children!"
"So, what's wrong with that?" I replied, and the whole group launched into irrepressible gales of laughter. It took divine intervention to get us back on topic.
Consider it a gift. Laughter, I mean. It truly is a medicine. We squelch the joy if we take ourselves too seriously. My friend and I have been driving down the road and laughed so hard we almost had to pull over. All because one of us forgot what we were saying in the middle of a sentence!
I come away with this comfort ... "a merry heart is like a medicine" (Proverbs 17:22)
A merry heart is not a natural heart. It's a gift God puts inside us. It's strength to look at the future and laugh. (Provers 31:25)
We may not know what the future is, but we do know where it will be - in His hands!
I've noticed, the closer I live to Him, the more I am able to laugh - no matter what's going on around me.