Laughter, while important for lots of emotional and health reasons, works best when experienced in relationship – this is an important piece that often gets left out. Think about when we watch a funny TV show or YouTube video. One of the first things we do is to look to share it with someone. “Hey, check this out. I laughed my butt off!”
This connection piece is important in every aspect of life of course, but it’s important to call it out in the context of laughter.
As I watch my kids, they understand and live the spiritual connection of happiness. When they get into “silly mode” they’re on a different plane. They’re totally connected, and laughing all the way. They’ve transcended to an incredible place of joy.
On the flip side, Dallas Willard notes in The Divine Conspiracy that “When our ‘spirituality’ disconnects from…relationships…one of the chief signs…is that we lose our ability to laugh.”
“[Laughter] is one of the surest ways for human beings to come together and break the stalemates of life.” Years of hatred, anger, and resentment can melt away in a literal heartbeat.
Laughter reconnects us with people, and connects us to God. I remember when I lost all my notes for a presentation. While shocked at first, I finally broke out laughing. I was laughing “with” God at the lessons about control and letting go that I had just so profoundly come to understand.
Thanks for reading,
~ Ted Olson