It’s funny the things you remember.
I have this vivid memory of playing at a park with a friend in elementary school. His father sat on a bench reading and keeping an eye on us as we pretended to be Power Rangers.
At one point I looked over and saw him laughing. As I walked by him later I asked him what he had read that had been so funny.
He told me it was The Bible. The Bible had made him laugh.
This startled me. How could someone laugh at The Bible?
As a kid I could not fathom laughing at something in The Bible. That was akin to laughing at God. The vision of God I had was stern and serious.
Sure, I saw God as loving and compassionate – but in a very official, formal sort of way. You wouldn’t laugh with the President around, and you wouldn’t laugh about matters with God either.
As I’ve grown older I’ve found myself laughing at The Bible as well. There is comedy in the scripture. Not in a “all of this is just laughable” way. More of in a wry comedic sense. You just have to laugh at some of the thing God’s people have done and said.
Still, it feels a little blasphemous to talk about God as having a sense of humor.
When a show like “Family Guy” makes fun of God, He’s seen as an eccentric billionaire on a power trip. When comedians like Louis C.K. try to make light of God they usually portray Him as angry, grumpy, or just aloof and outdated.
It’s hard to argue with those presentations of God in pop culture. After all, as Christians we don’t do the best job representing the better sides of God.
I wonder what would happen if we started seeing God as having a sense of humor.
You might think showing the lighter side of God is not all that important. You might even call it misguided.
But think about this – when we look for a mate or even just a friend, a sense of humor is often the most important character trait we look for.
Seeing that someone has a sense of humor and a willingness to laugh at themselves brings people closer together. Comedy brings out the humanity in people.
I used to think God was all business. But now I think God is funny.
I think instead of giving us a stern lecture about what we got wrong, God wants us to sit back on the couch with Him and share a laugh about our mistakes. I think as we grow more confident in our faith we should find ourselves less serious about our mistakes because of how serious God takes grace.
When we don’t have to take our failures so seriously, we are free to laugh with God about where we were and how far we’ve come.
Do you think God has a sense of humor? Have you ever found yourself laughing with God?