Whatever your personality, every single one of us enjoys nothing more than a good laugh whether that be at a well-executed joke from a friend or a simple anecdote shared as part of our Pastor’s weekly sermon. I am a member of a small group that meets every week outside COVID and we have one member who likes me has a very sharp brain and can turn any conversation or words used into a joke or bring humour out of a situation. As you will appreciate this man is well-liked and enjoys popularity with the rest of the group.
While the bible remains relatively silent on the issue, I fully believe that Jesus would have enjoyed sharing humour with his disciples around the supper table or sharing positive banter with other people in many different scenarios. As we all know most women are very much attracted to men who can make them laugh which is most understandable given there is nothing worse than sharing a marriage with a grumpy person who cannot appreciate the odd joke. Having been a member of Broadmead for 14 happy years, I appreciate our Pastor and his use of humour as part of his sermons to bring a point across and i think Adam has got a good balance in his messages between humour and more serious points and this has ameliorated in recent years.
It is very interesting to observe that many preachers can use too much or too little humour and I have been at Christian conferences where we witness a speaker using so many jokes that you question whether you are attending a Billy Connolly stand up show or a Christian exposition of the gospels.
When you hear a joke told or humour used in whatever context, sadly it is often used to bring someone down, to belittle an individual or group or simply be used out of jealousy in a workplace setting. As Christians, we must all learn to discern when it is appropriate to laugh, to confront someone over the content of their joke or simply not get involved.
The reality is that many jokes are used at someone else’s expense and are told against sensitive groups whether that be on racial grounds, against disabled or used against women or the elderly/ sick. Too many of us think that staying silent is the correct approach when we hear an inappropriate jest however as far as I see it this is not acceptable. We must confront the joke teller if possible and challenge their motives, their humour and express your opinion that it cannot be tolerated.
If at work, it is easier to do if you are in a Management position and you hear this from a sub-ordinate however not so easy if it is the Manager themself who is telling the joke and challenging them it therefore much harder. Remember when used correctly humour is a wonderful thing and whether you are a mature believer or a younger Christian it can be very healthy in a relationship or a family environment. Keep smiling.