Wikipedia defines laughter as “a physical reaction in humans, consisting usually of rhythmical, often audible contractions of the diaphragm and other parts of the respiratory system. It is a response to certain external or internal stimuli.”
Now you know—maybe.
We all know how to laugh, but where did it come from?
Evolvers would pin laughter to a relief response in a close call with, say, a saber-tooth tiger. My simple explanation: God—not evolution. Laughter is deeply embedded in human nature, put there by our Creator God. Even babies laugh, long before they can speak.
Laughter expresses joy, humor, approval, or release. A good joke. A surprising twist. An unexpected ending. People who seldom laugh are sad, indeed. I love to laugh and have even injected laughter into my funeral service. Stay tuned on that!
My previous blog talked about Jesus laughing, which resonated well with hundreds of readers.* I believe laughter is part of the nature of God. The Bible says so in Psalm 2:4—”The One enthroned in heaven LAUGHS.”
Sixty-some years ago, a miscarriage left me sad. A friend came over and read funny nursing stories. My spirits were restored, and I have never forgotten the kindness of Nurse Margaret.
Laughter, though, can be used badly. Here are my Ten Commandments for Laughter:
Thou shall not mock anyone.
Thou shall not take malicious pleasure in your enemy’s misfortunes.
Thou shall not make fun of anyone’s disabilities.
Thou shall not tell or laugh at dirty jokes.
Thou shall not laugh at bad behavior.
Thou shall not deride political perspectives that are contrary to your own.
Thou shall not ridicule anyone’s appearance.
Thou shall not laugh at clumsy efforts.
Thou shall not make jokes in times of grief or tragedy.
Thou shall not be flippant during serious conversation.
Honor the Lord thy God, EVEN WITH YOUR LAUGHTER.
* Last blog, I gave some misinformation about The Chosen—and got a special note from Dallas the Director about it! The app is free and the DVD only $30, not $35. My apologies. Go to the website and watch some extra-info clips. Join the thousands who LOVE this production. I can’t say enough good things about it!
Are you a laugher? Tell me what makes you laugh. Can you add more “Thou shall nots?” Comment below, or email