A preacher was completing a temperance sermon with great expression he said, “If I had all the beer in the world, I’d take it and throw it into the river.” With even greater emphasis, he said, “And if I had all the wine in the world, I’d take it and throw it into the river.” And then, finally, he said, “And if I had all the whiskey in the world, I’d take it and throw it into the river.” He sat down.

The song leader then stood very cautiously and announced with a pleasant smile, “For our closing song, let us sing Hymn #723: ‘Shall We Gather at the River.'”

 Did I make you laugh or maybe, a least, a little smile. I hope so. We need to laugh more, smile more. After all, we are an Easter people. We are in a season that we especially should be over-joyed, filled with laughter for CHRIST is RISEN!

Laughter, Readers Digest reminds me, is the best medicine. Laughter releases tension, and we have enough of that these days. I think we all need to stop taking ourselves so seriously. We need to recognize that we serve a Risen Lord and that God is in control. We put too much emphasis on what’s wrong and what’s bad with the world. Perhaps we need to lighten up and find the joy and laughter in our hearts.

The prophet Nehemiah encouraged the people of God, “Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks, and send some to those who have nothing prepared. This day is holy to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”

It is a good thing to have joyful, laugh-filled hearts. In order to really celebrate our joy in the resurrection, on April 8, during the morning worship service we will be celebrating Holy Humor Sunday. On this Sunday, you are encouraged to bring a good (church appropriate) joke to share with the congregation. There will be other joyful acts of celebration throughout the service. I also want to encourage you to dress in a silly way for this service. Again, the idea is to bring our greatest expressions of joy and laughter, a real celebration. I know this is asking many to get out of their comfort zone, especially when it comes to church, but I want to ask you “If you can’t be a fool for Jesus, who can you be a fool for?”

Together, this Easter season, let us throw off the gloom and darkness of our world and find the eternal joy that is life in our Risen Savior!

Knock, knock.
Who’s there?
Atch who?
God bless you.  Do you need a Kleenex?

Oh well.

In Christ’s love and laughter,

Pastor Jeff