A few months ago I was asked to contribute to a book with the same title as this feature; ‘Does God LOL?’ Or, if you're not user of social media terminology: ‘Does God Laugh Out Loud?’
The book is the brainchild of Frankie Mulgrew (son of comedian Jimmy Cricket) and is a compilation of funny pieces from a variety of comedy greats such as Ken Dodd, Frank Carson, Milton Jones and Tim Vine, and sold in aid of the Mary’s Meals charity.
My input was via my comic creation Derek the Cleric (and not in my real persona, Andy Robb) and it set me to thinking as to where humour sits within God’s diverse creativity.
Humour (particularly aimed at an adult audience) sometimes has a habit of gravitating towards the lewd or the crude; whilst our goal as Christians should be to major on ‘whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable — if anything is excellent or praiseworthy’ (Philippians 4:8). So I’ve been pondering what that actually looks like in practice.
I’m not convinced that attempting to redeem (or ‘Christianise) something that we might consider corrupted (such as humour) is perhaps our best call. My starting point would be from the premise that God created the entire universe and signed it off with the statement, ‘God saw all that he had made, and it was very good’.
Of course, we’re aware that it didn’t take long for God’s perfect creative output to be corrupted by sin, yet it remains true that creativity of every kind can track back to God as its source - including things that make us laugh.
The Bible clearly tells us that we are to be the head and not the tail and I’d like to make the case for us following in the footsteps of our Creator and also being creative initiators with regard to humour, and not simply reactors. Some might consider focussing on this aspect of God’s creativity as trivial; but I don’t believe that God would generate such a powerful mechanism for bringing life to our emotions if he did not consider it of value.
I think we can sometimes get so caught up with our passion for telling the world that Jesus came to bring life in all its fullness, that we can forget to actually indulge ourselves in this abundant life we speak of.
Maybe I’m somewhat biased because humour is a key component in my books but I’m convinced that God wants Christians to set the standard and not trail behind the trends.
Rather than attempt to sanitise what we might consider unsavoury comedy, how about going to the source of all laughter (God) and asking the Holy Spirit for material that will surpass what the world has to offer?
Does God LOL? Absolutely! Having scoured the Bible for unusual fodder for my 50 Bible Stories kids books I’ve come across no shortage of stories to bring a smile to my face: A donkey who gets to be God’s mouthpiece, David interrupting King Saul as he’s spending a penny, a dead guy coming back to life when he’s hastily hurled on to a Elisha’s remains and, oh yes, the Blobfish.
August 29th, 2013 - Posted & Written by The Editor