IT HELPS TO LAUGH
On my website, www.smccutchan.com ,you will find God Laughs–Why Don’t You? : Making Use of Humor in the Practice of Ministry. In many ways it may be the most unusual book that I have written in my effort to provide helpful resources for the pastor engaged in ministry. As I say in my dedication,
This book is dedicated to the clergy of the world who commit themselves to being God’s spokesperson to humanity and interceding with God on behalf of humanity. It is written with full awareness that the more sensitive they are to both God and humanity, the more demanding their own lives become. It is offered with the hope that for some exercising humor in their lives can be experienced as God’s healing gift.
INTERRUPTING THE STRESS OF MINISTRY
Being an ordained minister in our culture is a stressful challenge.
Sometimes it helps to remind ourselves of the ridiculous paradox in which we find ourselves as ordained clergy. We can take ourselves far too seriously and forget that we are humans called by God to serve a greater purpose and as God reminded Paul, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness” (2 Cor 12:9).
It’s tough being a pastor these days.
Who is your boss?
You are called by God.
You are ordained by a denomination.
You are hired by a congregation.
Who is Your boss?
Jesus says, “You cannot serve God and wealth.”
The congregation says, “Can’t you attract some rich bankers and lawyers to help the budget.”
God says, “I sent my son to proclaim Good News to the poor and lift up the broken hearted.”
The congregation says, “Too many bums are coming to this church to get help, and it’s ruining our reputation.”
Paul says, “For freedom Christ has set us free. . . . The whole law is summed up in a single commandment, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’”
The denomination says, “These are the rules. Obey them or move.”
Who is your boss?
HEALTHY SOULS CAN LAUGH
Our soul is healthiest when we do not take ourselves too seriously. Laughter can distance us from a situation and enable us to get perspective. Spiritually, laughter at self can help remind us that we are not God and salvation depends not on our perfection but on God’s grace.
Grace is frustrating.
No matter how gifted you are,
You can’t win God’s popularity contest.
I’m in support of God’s grace in my life.
I even think it is a nice boost to some people who are down.
I just wish God would check with me first to see who is worthy.
The book offers some humorous insights into ministry but it also provides some concrete strategies on how to integrate humor into a variety of aspects of ministry. The book concludes with a section A Pastor’s Survival Notebook which provides practical advice on how to utilize humor in your life and ministry.
PARTNERS WITH GOD
God said, “I’ll create humans with free will.”
Satan sneered, “I’ll defeat you with sin (ego, pride)
God said, “I’ll send my son who will live a perfect life of faith.”
Death chortled, “I’ll crucify him.”
God said, “I’ll save the world with churches led by very human pastors.”
Hope laughed, “This I got to see. Can I help?”
God said, “Only if you have a sense of humor.”
Maybe a laugh a day can keep the demons away. I hope you will enjoy the book and that it will be a support to you in your ministry.