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When was the last time you had a belly laugh, side hurting, tears rolling down your cheeks kind of laugh? Sometimes they come one right after the other and you can’t catch your breath. Sometimes they don’t happen often enough. When they do happen, oh what joy bubbles out! Good natured, joy-filled laughter heals the soul from the inside out. 

Laughter can come when you least expect it. Many moons ago, sadness darkened my soul when I had a miscarriage and had to have surgery afterward. The purpose of the surgery was a result of the miscarriage. I was dressed in a wonderful hospital gown, IV in my arm, socks with rubber soles on my feet, and a cap over my head. I somehow got a glimpse of myself in a mirror and thought, “Looking good there, girl.” (threaded with sarcasm!). They were getting ready to wheel me back when they put a sticky temperature thingy (sorry to all nurses and doctors out there!) on my forehead. At first, I thought, you have got to be kidding me. I feel terrible, look like death warmed over and now you’re sticking a temperature thingy on my forehead?? Good grief! The nurse put it on, stepped back, saw my face, gave me a sympathetic look and laughter bubbled out of me. I have no idea how on earth I conjured up laughter, but there it was. I looked back at the nurse while laughing with tears rolling down my cheeks and thought, who the heck cares. Time to embrace the craziness of it all and roll with it. The nurse commented that a good sense of humor will go a long way. I sure hope so, because at that moment, I wasn’t really feeling it! The laughter broke the tension and brought perspective to the situation.

Laughter can also bring additional joy to an already joy filled moment. Last week my daughter celebrated her birthday. After the birthday cake was eaten and presents were opened, we decided to play some cards. Have you ever played Uno Attack? Uno Attack has a machine type thing that spits the cards out at you when you push the button. Instead of having a pile of cards to draw from, you push the button instead. Sometimes you only get a couple of cards, sometimes a handful and sometimes none at all! This was the first time my brother, sister-in-law and sister had played Uno Attack. We played Uno often growing up. It was a camping vacation, rainy day game. The “Attack” part of the game was a novelty in which my brother really got into! He had us laughing within five minutes of playing the game. The longer we played the game, more cards needed to be added to the deck. We ended up with four decks of Uno cards within the circulation of the game. It was the game that never ended!! We were getting to the point we were passing cards around just to try to end the game!! My mom was sitting next to me and it was her turn. She started to lay down a card that was not the color we needed to end the game. We all, lovingly, yelled, “No, keep it yellow!” She got flustered and yelled “PASS!” Wrong game Mom! (We play a lot of Euchre which has an option to pass!) We all busted out laughing. It was a split my sides, tears rolling down my face, kind of laughter. We laughed for several minutes and long after the game finally ended!! Still laughing as I think of the memory. 

Laughing is contagious. Have you been around someone who was laughing, you started laughing and you have no idea why you’re laughing? What about slap happy laughter? We girls are good at that!! Our giggles turn into all out laughing for no real apparent reason. It was funny to us, whatever it was!!

I like to laugh. We go through stages when laughter is in abundance and times when it’s hard to even smile, let alone laugh. We are promined, joy comes in the morning. Laughter comes in the morning. It really does. If you’re in a grief, saddened stage, take courage, you will get your laugh back. In time, you will feel like you’re on the other side of it, life feels lighter, and laughter comes easier. 

Jesus laughed. Luke 10:21 says “Jesus was overflowing with the Holy Spirit’s joy…” I think overflowing joy constitutes as laughing. (My interpretation.) Jesus had joy-filled laughter He shared with those around Him. If we are to model our life after His, we need joy-filled laughter too!

Laughing while playing Uno Attack was a joy-filled moment for our family. Later that evening, I asked my daughter what her favorite part about the day was; she said playing Uno Attack. Yep, laughter is good for the soul.

On the days I can barely drum up a smile, a laughing memory comes to mind, lifts my spirits and brightens my soul. When, in the middle of a tense moment, a comment is said, a pause is made, weird looks are given and my brother asks, “Too much too soon?” And then we both burst out laughing. It wasn’t too much or too soon. It was at the right moment at the right time to lighten the mood and bring perspective to the situation.

Good natured, fun-filled laughter soothes the soul. The effects of laughter heal from the inside out. Be filled with fun-filled laughter so much that it overwhelms you and you yell, “PASS,” because you don’t know what to do with it! Keep laughing, enjoy it, embrace it, soak in the sound of your loved ones laughter, store it away in your special memory box. 

My friends, laughing is light-hearted, good memory making fun. Share a good laugh with someone and brighten each other’s day. Try not to take life so seriously. Relax, let your guard down a bit, tell a funny joke and throw your head back for a good belly laugh. 

Tell someone next to you a funny joke and see how hard you can get them to laugh. Soon you will be laughing too!!

Thanks for sharing a moment with me. We are in this together, laughing, in Him.

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