A Little Laughter


Abraham fell flat on his face. And then he laughed, thinking, “Can a hundred-year-old man father a son? And can Sarah, at ninety years, have a baby?”

~Genesis 17:17, MSG


Laughter is the automatic human response to incongruity.

~Dallas Willard

When I came across the word incongruity, the first definition that popped into my mind was something that is wrong. Well that is a very vague definition of incongruity. It actually means something out of place, something that is not in harmony with it’s surroundings like a porta-john in the front yard of a million dollar home. An incongruity is a gross inconsistency, something that seems highly inappropriate like a rich person driving an old beat up vehicle. It is something that does not fit its context like a ninety year old woman being pregnant. We laugh at rich people who drive clunkers and we would probably get a chuckle out of a ninety year old getting pregnant. I doubt that she would be laughing. When God told Abraham point blank, Sarah is going to get pregnant and have a son, Abraham rolled in the grass laughing. Actually Sarah laughed also and so God told them, “You will name the child Issac,” which means “Laughter” in Hebrew.

Everything that God said to Abraham seemed to be an incongruity. Then God said to Abraham, “Regarding Sarai, your wife—her name will no longer be Sarai. From now on her name will be Sarah and I will bless her and give you a son from her! Yes, I will bless her richly, and she will become the mother of many nations. Kings of nations will be among her descendants.” Did you see those three outrageous promises: [1] Give you a son, [2] Make you the mother of many nations, and [3] Kings of nations will come from you. These promises not only seemed impossible, they seemed ridiculous and so Abraham and Sarah laughed.

I wish to make two observations: [1] We can never underestimate God’s ability to keep a promise no matter how impossible that promise may sound. What every God promises, He will do. Our ability to understand how He is going to fulfill the promise is immaterial: He doesn’t need us to understand. When Joe David called me to fix a door or some bad wiring I don’t sit him down and explain what I’m going to do. They would take too much time; I just go fix the problem. His understanding has nothing to do with my fixing. [2] Every home needs a little laughter; we all need a little Issac. If we stop laughing, we will not fit into the culture of heaven where they will be lots of joy and laughter. All families have incongruities but we can’t stop laughing. On our recent trip to Guatemala, Jason who has a gift at noticing all my incongruous ways, kept the entire group entertained by mimicking my inconsistencies or flaws or whatever you want to call them. I was not offended. I would have been disappointed had he ignored me. It was a help to the entire team to laugh. Laughter is good!

One more little hint: don’t try to be Jason if you don’t have the gift, that will offend me. Our jocularity cannot be malicious or hurtful.

Got one project completed: only one problem, I have a dozen more that are incomplete. I love my little John Deere: it has almost paid for itself. I should have got one ten years ago. I’ve made a deal for another John Deere, a 20-10. One problem, I need to sell my Japanese rice burner. It’s a little 25 horse diesel that runs like a top. I have reduced the price to 2,000.00.

No hay next year for Trunk-A-Trail. Mandy has decided to go with pumpkins and I am all in. I owe a huge thanks to Jake Sims for helping me move the hay, although I wouldn’t call it hay. It would have been great to burn brush.

Don’t forget to pray for Tracey B who had another good week. My oldest sister June Daphney has a medical issue and we have a lady for GP who is at Crestwood. Her name is Joyce Cowart.

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