Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Laughing Out Loud!

By: Stephanie S. Smith, staff writer for the Moody Fiction Blog

I recently finished reading Hello, I Love You: Adventures in Adoptive Fatherhood by Ted Kluck and one of his marks of writing, I was pleased to discover, is humor.  Kluck has professional wrestling and indoor football on his resume, and looks the part! Yet in his true story of the adoption process he openly admits, “There’s nothing like adoption to make a grown man cry. Repeatedly."

His story, of he and his wife's journey to the Ukraine to bring home two boys, is peppered with laughable one-liners and amusing incidents.  In his introduction he writes, "[In this book] you'll also notice lots of frank, often sarcastic prose about cultural differences--usually with the author as the punch line, as it was my inability to deal with these differences that provided a lot of humor (in retrospect) and anger (at the time)."

I suppose that humor is a good way to cope with an adoption process so complicted and full of setbacks even the agency had never seen anything like it. (P.S. Check back at the blog later in the week for giveaways of this book!)

On a broader note, I think humor can indeed play a redemptive role in story.  I will not call it "holy humor" which sounds too hoky to me, like Christian pick-up lines or church bulletin typos.  Neither am I talking about "holy laughter", which I just learned via GoogleSearch today refers to a Charismatic phenemonen.

I am talking about laughter as a sign of triumph.

In Genesis, Sarah names her child Isaac, meaning "Laughter", rejoicing in an occassion that was as joyous as it was ridiculous: a post-menopausal woman bearing a son that would become the father of many.  It was, in other words, a miracle.  Holy hilarity.  The Old Testament frequently demonstrates laughter as the response of the saved, and the New Testament links comedy to eschatological victory.  The great joke is this: the grave that swallowed its victims (Ps. 55:15; 69:15; Prov. 1:12) is now "swallowed in victory" (1 Cor. 15:54)!

Dante developed this theme imaginatively in The Divine Comedy.  After he has risen from his agonizing experience in hell and approaches the heavenly realm he hears a glorious sound, "It sounded like the laughter of the universe."

May we rejoice in the Victory of Christ with sincerity, but also revelry, as we rejoice in the Resurrection as the Last Laugh in our fallen world.

1 comment:

  1. I am thankful that the Lord gave us a sense of humor and the ability to laugh!


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