I’m a serious enough sort of guy. It’s happened to me frequently in life that my peers have seen this and surely thought, “Lighten up a little, Steve,” and then custom-designed a little prank—all for my ‘benefit’ I might add—which I’ve not always enjoyed.
I frequently have times where I have to remind myself, “Get over yourself!”
I accept that a certain seriousness—especially if I’m under task pressure—is part of my make-up. You might in some ways relate. But we’re best never to leave it there.
The Abject Importance of Humour
Situationally-appropriate humour, at any number of levels, is the key to breaking the silly grades of tension whereby we’re stuck in the rut of a seriously tunnel-visioned world without a clue of, or a care for, externalities.
Humour shatters this false world immediately and allows the release of malignant desire—which will prove the ending of us if we take it much further.
Humour Promotes and Introduces Patience
Once we’ve had our chuckle—and most humbly with, and over, ourselves—we then have the opportunity for reason. The mood of reason breaks through our psyches and we can immediately be counselled by the Spirit of God to invest wisely in patience.
Of course, this happens often times at many levels below our conscious thought mostly; it only seems the humour alone has done it.
Patience is a very practical quality. We can almost observe patience; it becomes not so much a behaviour, but we look patient and at ease when we’re ‘adjusted’ to our life situations.
The frustration highlighted by blocked goals reveals at a deeper heart level the sins of pride and anger, although it’s pride we’ll focus on here.
Pride says, “I want things my way, on and in my time, on my terms, and heaven help anyone or anything that gets in my way.” Pride has ‘me’ pinned all over it. Do we see here the link between our overt and extraneous seriousness and this?
Both humour—our initiating it and responding to it—and patience help us resist or fall for pride.
Constantly Re-Setting our Expectations
This is one of the most important considerations of life—to conform our expectations (that which we have of ourselves and others) to the perceivable reality.
Humour and patience facilitate this. They create space for us to review the expectations we have. They also give us the space for courage to enter so we can morph our expectations so our goals are more pliable, and hence they’re made more achievable.
The true ‘game’ of life is hitting the mark. This is one for which we cannot achieve without the foregoing. Life with appropriately-girding humour and patience is darting for the bullseye!
© 2010 S. J. Wickham.