Laughter in Heaven
Before getting back to serious blogs, let me talk about laughter. (With a Brian Regan video at the end I think you'll enjoy.)
Christ said, "Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven" (Luke 6:23).
Just as Jesus promises satisfaction as a reward in Heaven, he also promises laughter as a reward. Anticipating the laughter to come, Jesus says we should leap for joy now. Can you imagine someone leaping for joy in utter silence, without laughter? Take any group of rejoicing people, and what do you hear? Laughter. If God didn’t have a sense of humor, we as his image bearers wouldn’t. It is God’s gift to humanity, a gift that will be raised to new levels after our bodily resurrection.
Luke 6:21 says, "God blesses you who are hungry now, for you will be satisfied. God blesses you who weep now, for in due time you will laugh."
The reward of those who mourn now will be laughter later. I’m convinced Christ will laugh with us, and his wit and fun-loving nature will be our greatest source of endless laughter. What a promise: "you will laugh"! It's as inspired as John 3:16.
An elderly gentleman I led to Christ asked a question of a Christian employee in his care center: “Will we have fun in Heaven?”
“Oh, no,” the woman replied, appearing dismayed that he’d even asked.
When he told me this story, I shook my head, because I’ve heard it so often. Why did this Christian woman respond as she did? Because, in accordance with the faulty assumptions of Christoplatonism, she instinctively linked fun with sin and boredom with holiness. But she couldn’t be more wrong. God promises that we’ll laugh, rejoice, and experience endless pleasures in Heaven.
Some people assume Heaven is boring, and lacks laughter because that's how their Christian lives are. That’s not God’s fault; it’s their own. God calls us to follow him in an adventure that should put us on life’s edge. He’s infinite in creativity, goodness, beauty, and power. If we’re experiencing the invigorating stirrings of God’s Spirit, trusting him to fill our lives with divine appointments, experiencing the childlike delights of his gracious daily kindnesses, then we’ll know that God is exciting and Heaven is exhilarating. People who love God crave his companionship. To be in his presence will be the very opposite of boredom.
We think of ourselves as fun-loving, and of God as a humorless killjoy. But we’ve got it backward. It’s not God who’s boring; it’s us. Did we invent wit, humor, and laughter? No. God did. We’ll never begin to exhaust God’s sense of humor and his love for adventure.
Most of us can envision ourselves being happy for a few days or a week, if that. But a year of complete and sustained happiness? Impossible, we imagine, because we’ve never experienced it. We think of life under the Curse as normal because that’s all we’ve ever known. A hundred or a million years of happiness is inconceivable to us. Just as creatures who live in a flat land can’t conceive of three-dimensional space, we can’t conceive of unending happiness.
Because that level of happiness isn't possible here on the fallen Earth, many assume it won’t be possible on the New Earth. But that's wrong. To properly envision Heaven, we must remove from our eyes the distorted lenses of death and the Curse.
Meanwhile, we need to enjoy some laughter. Last year on Nanci's birthday we went to Portland to hear comedian Brian Regan (www.brianregan.com). We love his humor, and he keeps it clean, which is refreshing (and the reason we don't watch most comedians). Here's Brian talking about preparing packages for a UPS pickup.
Photo credit: Julia Freeman-Woolpert via Freeimages