Waynedale United Methodist Church
Tuesday, March 31, 2020
Making Disciples of Jesus for the Transformation of the World!

May 7, 2017 Sermon

“Holy Humor Sunday”
1 Corinthians 15:12 – 22
Ted Jansen  May 7, 2017  Waynedale UMC
1.)        We celebrate the Resurrection of Jesus Christ today.  Each Sunday that we gather is a reminder that He is alive.
When we worship and affirm that He is alive this can give us joy.  We might smile and we might laugh as we live out our faith.  The resurrection of Jesus Christ proclaims to the world that the last word in life is not death.  God laugh’s at death!  God does not allow His own Son to be buried forever. God Almighty raised Jesus from the dead with joy and laughter in His Spirit.   
            Today we celebrate “Holy Humor Sunday” as a way of affirming God’s laugh.  The tradition of Holy Humor Sunday is rooted in early Greek Christians who wanted celebrate God’s laugh by laughing and experiencing joy in worship.  Thanks to each person who gave me jokes.
            I pray that we might sense joy as we laugh.  May we realize that whatever stress, struggles, challenges we have can be helped as we celebrate the God who overcame the death of His Son!          
2.)        A salesman at a mega store had only one sale that day, but it was for $158,762.  The manager of the store was flabbergasted and asked the salesman to explain. 
First, I sold the man some fishhooks, the salesman said.  Then I sold him a rod and reel.   When I found out he was planning on fishing down the coast, I suggested he’d need a boat.  Then I took him to the automotive department and sold him our biggest SUV to pull that boat.
You sold all that to a guy who came in for fishhooks? asked the boss. 
Actually, said the salesman, he came in for a bottle of aspirin for his wife’s migraine.  I told him, your weekend’s shot.  You might as well go fishing! 
3.)        A little boy was kneeling beside his bed with his mother and grandmother and softly saying his prayers. 
            “Dear God, please bless Mommy and Daddy and all the family and please give me a good night’s sleep.”  
            Suddenly he looked up and shouted, “And don’t forget to give me a bicycle for my birthday!” 
There is no need to shout like that, said his mother.  God isn’t deaf.  
            No, said the little boy, but Grandma is.  
Another little boy asked his grandma do you know why the crab crossed the road?  No, she replied.  He said, to get to the other tide.  
4.)        Humor helps out heart, our circulation, our attitude.  Do you feel a little bit better after laughing at a few jokes?  I was reading some information on humor and health and discovered an article entitled, “The Connection between Laughter, Humor and Good Health,” from University of Kentucky.  Here are some quotes to consider. 
“Your body cannot heal without play.  Your mind cannot heal without laughter.  You soul cannot heal without joy.”  (Catherine Rippenger Fenwick)  
            Laughter can be infectious.  It can make others smile and feel happier.  We are more likely to remember and want to be around the people who cheer us up and make us laugh. 
Humor and laughter are a powerful emotional medicine that can lower stress, dissolve anger, and unite people in troubled times.   “Laughter is the equivalent to “internal jogging.”  According to William Fry, MD, Professor of Psychiatry at Stanford University.
5.)        A husband and wife went to Taco Bell to eat.  The wife put too much hot sauce on her taco and it gave her bad heartburn. 
On the way home she asked her husband to stop at a gas station so she could get some tums.  She found them and put her tums on the counter, and was read to pay. 
The attendant asked her if she had gas.  This woman, replied with embarrassment to the attendant, no, I only have heartburn!  
6.)        We have been give life in its fullest and that included laughter.  In 1 Corinthians 15:22 we celebrate that “In Christ all will be made alive!”    
Jesus Christ was brought to life from death and we can know that our sins are forgiven and we are free to love.  When you are loved and can love this gives you joy!  Each of us can have hope, joy and a future because He lives.  A hymn says, “Because He Lives, I can face tomorrow!”  Perhaps we should sing, “Because He Lives, I can laugh with joy!”       
7.)        A man and his ever-nagging wife went on vacation in Jerusalem. The woman kept complaining about every little detail and making the trip unbearable.
            A few days before their vacation ended, a tragic accident ended the woman’s life. The undertaker told the husband, “You can have her buried here in the Holy Land for $150 or we can have her shipped back home for $5,000.”
The husband thought about it for a few seconds, then told the undertaker he would have her shipped back home.
“Why would you spend $5,000 to have her shipped home when you could have a beautiful burial here in Jerusalem, and it would only cost $150?!” the undertaker asked, taken aback.
The husband replied, “Long ago, a man died here, was buried here, and three days later, rose from the dead. I just can’t take that chance!”
8.)        A man and his wife, now in their 60’s were celebrating their 40th wedding anniversary.  On their special day a genie came to visit them and told them that they each had one wish that would be granted to them.  
The wife wished for a trip around the world.  Whoosh!  Immediately she had airline and cruise tickets in her hands. 
The man wished for a female companion 30 years younger.  Whoosh… immediately he turned 90 years old!     (Be careful for what you wish for!)
Charismatic: Only one. Hands already in the air. 
Pentecostal: Ten. One to change the bulb and nine to pray against the spirit of darkness. 
Presbyterians: None. Lights will go on and off at predestined times. 
Roman Catholic: None. Candles only. 
Baptists: At least 15. One to change the light bulb and three committees to approve the change plus decide who brings the potato salad and fried chicken. 
Methodists: Undetermined. Whether your light is bright, dull, or completely out, you are loved. You can be a light bulb, turnip bulb, or tulip bulb. Church wide lighting service is planned for Sunday. Bring bulb of your choice and a covered dish. 
Nazarene: Six. One woman to replace the bulb while five men review church lighting policy. 
Lutherans: None. Lutherans don't believe in change. 
Amish: What's a light bulb? 
10.)      You Know You're in a Redneck Church if...
people ask, when they learn that Jesus fed the 5000, whether the two fish were bass or catfish, and what bait was used to catch 'em.
when the pastor says, "I'd like to ask Bubba to help take up the offering," five guys and two women stand up.
opening day of deer season is recognized as an official church holiday.
a member of the church requests to be buried in his 4-wheel-drive truck because "It ain't never been in a hole it couldn't get out of."
in a congregation of 500 members, there are only seven different last names in the church directory.
people think "rapture" is what you get when you lift something too heavy.
the choir robes were donated by (and embroidered with the logo from) Billy Bob's Barbecue.
the collection plates are really hubcaps from a'56 Chevy.
you are called to service by a duck call.
the minister and his wife drive matching pickup trucks.
"Thou shall not covet" applies to huntin' dogs, too.
the final words of the benediction are, "Y'all come back now, ya heah."
11.)      We are a people who needs more joy.  I am a person who needs more joy!  I need to be reminded of that from time to time.  I had an experience that lifted my spirits with joy that I wanted to share with you. 
One of the last chapel times with the Pre-School children I had any of the boys to come up to the front and help me with the closing prayer.  They would repeat the words that I would share. 
As the boys all came up I wanted to be at their level instead of being way above them.  So, I decided to kneel down.   All of the boys decided to kneel down and do what I was doing.  I was laughing and trying to tell them that they didn’t need to kneel because I wanted to get to their level. 
            I laughed and chuckled and then I was touched by what I saw.  I decided not to say anything but allow God’s Spirit to touch me through the example of boys who were doing what I was doing.  We all knelt and prayed the closing prayer.  God touched my heart in a joyful way.  
12.)      I also remember a boy who was not raised in the traditions of the church and he would often come to worship with his grandparents.   I was near him when he came up for Communion and he said to me, “Wow, that tastes good.   Can I have some more!” 
            I laughed to myself and thought his words capture the essence of our faith in Christ.  Jesus is alive and loves us and when we taste that love we realize it is good and Yes, we can have more.  We can experience the love of Christ each day, all because He lives.