When I first went off to college, I had my entire life planned out. I knew what I was going to major in, where I was going to work when I graduated, and even knew where I was going to live. I was determined to graduate with the degree I had decided on since I was a freshman in high school. The very first day my parents dropped me off to start my college journey, I was also thoroughly convinced that things were going to go just as I had planned. Boy was I in for a surprise! That was probably the first time I realized two important things about life. First, life rarely goes as planned. Second, it’s ok to laugh!
My first few days of college went very well. Things started to change, however, once classes began. The love I had for certain subjects was no longer there; I even found myself somewhat bored. I began to question the plans that I had so carefully thought out.
For the Laughs
The clincher came on a day when I was in class. I told a joke, and no one laughed! That was major for many reasons. First, I was not one to speak out in class, so telling a joke took a lot of courage (I am not sure why I even did it). Second, the joke was funny….it was actually hilarious! But, no one laughed! I remember leaving that class and heading straight to my advisor’s office to change my major…to nursing!
Some would think that there is nothing to laugh about in nursing, but sure there is! It has brought me a lot of joy. I have learned that nursing, just like any other career choice and life itself, is about journeying with others. There is nothing like walking with others during difficult times and rejoicing when that season is over. Furthermore, when we can help others find joy and even laughter during a tough or uncertain time, it makes the journey a lot more enjoyable.
Finding Life’s Laughable Moments
Life may not always go as we have planned; just like it didn’t for me when I first started college. It can also be overwhelming at times with seasons of challenge after challenge. Simply because I had others to laugh with, I have survived some of my most difficult times. I have also walked with others during their challenging times with only one purpose in mind, and that was to add some laughter or even generate a smile.
I often think about times in the Bible that were not actually recorded as “laughable moments,” but no doubt was a time when others could not help but laugh. Think about Noah who had been mocked over and over while building the ark and loading it with animals (Genesis 6 and 7). I am sure he even doubted himself and God during that time. But, when the first raindrop fell, just maybe Noah and his family had a very good laugh! They still had an unknown journey ahead of them, but for that moment, I would like to think they had a good laugh.
Even Elijah had a good laugh in the midst of prophets being killed during his time (I Kings 18). Elijah was being challenged by the prophets of Baal to call upon his God to answer by fire. Elijah began to taunt them (I Kings 18:27) even though he was the only one of the Lord’s prophet that had not been killed. What confidence! I can see him laughing when God did send the fire, and it burned up the other sacrifices (I Kings 18:38).
Finally, I do believe that Jesus, who came to this world with a clear mission to accomplish, had a few good laughs. Maybe He laughed at the wedding when He turned water into wine (John 2: 7-11). Perhaps, He also laughed when He revealed Himself to Mary Magdalene in the tomb after His resurrection (John 20: 11-16). Jesus was human, and I believe that it is a part of human nature to have a good laugh every now and then.
Choose to Laugh
Maybe life has been a bit challenging for you lately. Or, maybe you are in a great season where the laughs can keep going. Either way, we have to remember to keep laughter and more importantly joy at the center of each day. When was the last time you had a good laugh?
A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. (Proverbs 17:22 NIV)
Sarah said, “God has brought me laughter, and everyone who hears about this will laugh with me.” (Genesis 21:6 NIV)
Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy. Then it was said among the nations, “The LORD has done great things for them.” (Psalms 126:2 NIV)
Tekeela, a health/wellness nurse educator, writer, and blogger, ties her love for Jesus, health and enjoying life on her blog, 1Life. She can be found usually with a book in hand. Her passion includes travel/medical missions and assisting others in living their best life possible.