I keep hearing voices in my head.
They never say anything. All they do is laugh.
I should probably explain.
When I think about the church that I grew up in several men always come to mind. Whenever I meet up with old friends from that church, we always talk about those same men.
Men like Al. Al was a spiritual giant. He wasn’t all that educated but he loved Jesus. There was nothing trendy about him but he loved people.
And then there was Todd. He was my pastor when I was growing up. He had a strong passion to see people get saved. Even people who lived halfway around the world. He’s the person responsible for helping me to see that world missions is not a slide show about snakes and funny clothes. He brought it to life.
Turk has always been my hero. He was built like a middle linebacker but wired like a prophet. I still remember the time when he showed me how to read the Bible for myself and how to develop a sermon.
Marty is probably the smartest man that I know. In most cases that’s a red flag but not for Marty. At the time he had minimal formal training but he was still one of the best preachers I had ever heard. Now that he has a lot more training and experience he’s still one of the best preachers that I have ever heard.
Keith was always my friend. He’s the wisest and most strategic person that I know. He hates the fact that there are still people on this planet who have never heard of Jesus. That’s why he moved his whole family to a different part of this planet. So that others may know.
All of these men come from different backgrounds. But they all loved Jesus. And they laughed a lot. Each in his own distinct way. I think about those laughs every day.
Our meeting place each week was not a stadium, gym or pub. It was the church. And these men always seemed happy to be there. It’s not because times where so much happier or easier back then. While they were laughing they were also dealing with physical ailments, sick relatives and whatever else most people deal with today. They just lived as though Jesus was in charge and it made them happy.
And I’m better for it.
In today’s world, it’s easy to convince ourselves that there is nothing to laugh about. At our current rate, I’m expecting some congressman to introduce a bill outlawing public laughter. Or at least slapping a tax on it. Too offensive.
Christians should be known for a lot of things. Laughter is not the most important thing but it is important. We, of all people, have reason to live as though Jesus is in charge of everything. We, of all people, though our hearts may break, have reason to be happy.
My sons are growing up in church like I did. I’m thankful that a few times a week they get to hear the sounds of men who came to church because they love Jesus and love his people. The sounds of godly men laughing.
I know that they’ll never forget those sounds.
And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.
Acts 2:46-47 (ESV)