Looking back on my childhood, it is filled with memories of sitting around the dinner table each night, dad at the head of the table, mom across from him, and their five angelic children gathered around them. Coming from a family that consisted of five sibling, things could suddenly become very interesting without a moments notice, and it did.
It was during these family times around the dinner table that my dad tried out his latest jokes on us. I do not know if it was based on the fact that we were kids or if his jokes were just really bad but I do remember them not carrying a whole lot of humor. His pride and joy seemed to be the jokes that he thought up on his own and they always produced our deepest groans. When his face lit up and he started wiggling in his chair we all knew what was coming. Joke telling was not necessarily a gifting but he seemed to assume that it was and he made sure he was using it, and often.
I am pretty sure that sometime in your life you have also come across and experienced a want to be joker. They are the people that retell a joke in their own version, forget the punch line, or mix two different jokes together and end up getting completely lost in it. At the end of the joke they are usually the only ones laughing whole-heartedly and acting as if it was the first time they had heard the joke themselves, and it probably was.
These joke telling episodes with my dad have continued to this day. During a recent visit he told a joke that was actually funny and I am now in the process of emailing my siblings so they too can enjoy it after years of waiting for it to emerge.
We were discussing marriage and he quickly quipped,
“I know there won’t be marriage in heaven because scripture says,
there will be no more pain and suffering.”
I noticed we were all laughing except for my mother who was seated beside him. I guess she did not get it.
Thinking about my dad I have come to realize that it is just his heart’s desire to make everyone smile, laugh, and enjoy life. If he could ease a burden and lighten a load it would truly make his day. It was your smile that was the sunshine in his life and he strove to make every day sunny for all he met.
My Father God also wants to fill my life with joy and happiness. He delights in my smile and the sound of my laughter. I also know that when I allow him to lighten my load and I trust him with my burdens it truly makes His day. I am his delight.
For the LORD your God is living among you.
He is a mighty savior.
He will take delight in you with gladness.
With his love, He will calm all your fears.
He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.
Zephaniah 3:17 NLT
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