Is it allowable to have any fun?

Once after a marathon of a winter with sick children, lots of snow, ministry conferences and 3 teenagers and one elementary child in the house, a sweet angel friend bought me a massage. It just took one time to make me a fan. Now, I save my treasured extra dollars in a secret drawer and when I have enough saved, I treat myself to a massage, as I am quite sure it must be good for my health.

I was looking back at some pictures from a year ago, and ran into this anecdote from a year ago, as Joy and I were squishing together on the couch at home tonight, looking at old pictures, stalking instagram,  and we giggled all over again!

So enjoy my true story that still makes me laugh!

A couple of weeks ago, I went in for a massage and it was wonderful.

When it was over, I dressed in the dim lights and could hardly see anything.

I then went to three stores, when at the last store, a lady gently came forward and said, “I don’t know if I will offend you, but did you know your shirt is on wrong side out and all the tags are showing and the buttons are backwards? Just thought you might want to know.”

To think I went through 3 stores that way—-life is generally humbling.

But, it actually made me giggle, over and over throughout the day!

Joy, at finals, and with a speech tourney this weekend and a room to clean and a paper to write told me of a quote that she was thinking about, and it made her giggle. She said she had been so serious and responsible that she needed a little lightening up of life.

“A Puritan is someone who is deathly afraid that someone,

somewhere, is having fun.”

H. L. Mencken

Though I have nothing against Puritans, this probably expresses what my children sometimes thought of me!

All of life a serious issue and no room for humor!

Perhaps there are times we just need to lighten up and have fun and enjoy the fun that life has given to us.

Too much instruction, too much seriousness or correction is heavy for a child’s spirit and becomes too much.

So next time you wear your shirt wrong-side out, just giggle and get a good laugh-don’t take yourself too seriously.

Don’t be afraid to smile or to let your children be silly or just act their age. (And I think Jesus wants us to be as children, too.)

Don’t be afraid to laugh at your 4 year old boy’s silly joke. ( Joel said, “What happened when the snail crossed the road? He got squished!” hahahahaha–this was a 4 year old joke in our home! Smile and giggle–you will live longer.

(And please no one write to me about the person who wrote this quote–a satirist, who was a journalist and did not especially like Christians. I know! But his quip did reflect a bit of truth–that I have seen at times in myself and in others.)

Maybe, as believers, and as moms,

it would just be good for us to celebrate laughter and life a little bit more than always being too serious.

Research shows that a person who smiles 10 times a day, is happier and raises his happy hormone levels immensely. So sometimes in the car while driving, I will smile 10 times–because scripture is actually true–a joyful heart is good medicine, and it drives my kids crazy and then to laughter.

There were times when my children told me to “lighten up,” and I actually found it to be good advice–less stressful on the body!

Hope your day has at least a couple of good laughs in it. :)

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Comments

  1. dora says

    With 4 “active” boys, 10 and under in the house, if I didn’t laugh I would be crying. God gave us children, family, and life to enjoy. Also, being able to laugh at yourself is a wonderful quality.

  2. Julie says

    I’m a realtor and the other day u showed property to a sweet family where the father had his shirt inside out and his zipper undone. I didn’t look at him in fear of bursting with laughter so I came home and burst to my husband. That very week I picked up my daughter went to a store and came home then looked down and said did I just go to hobby lobby like this? Yes indeed I did. During the day I grabbed my jeans at my ankles and rolled them to mid calf to get them out of my way. They were not even AND MY Zipper was undone!

    • Sally says

      Oh my. Did you feel guilty for laughing at that poor man? I would have felt the same way! And while I’m brave about helping a nice mama, an unzipped zipper is another story. Do you think the children noticed? Oh dear! Maybe we’ll all remember to check a mirror before we venture out in public a bit more often!

  3. says

    We are off to chop down our Christmas tree today. I am sure there will be laughing involved. :) Thank you for this simple, yet powerful reminder.

  4. says

    One of the things I loved most about my mother was her sense of humor. Life threw her some very bad times including being widowed as a young mother with seven children and then later when my own father died suddenly when I was only ten.

    But she could be so funny. I still remember the day she saw a spider in our house and thought it hilarious to put it on the end of a broom and chase her daughter (that being me) around the yard with it.

    Hmmm… maybe I should save that story for counseling. Hehehehe… But really, we all agreed that Mamaw was still a little girl on the inside and that combined with how much she loved us covered a multitude of sins.

  5. Erin says

    Thank you for the reminder. It blessed me this morning! Now I just need to post this on my fridge to look at everyday.

  6. Elisa says

    I sent this article to my husband because it’s what I’ve been telling him for years. Maybe when he reads it and hears it from someone else he’ll listen.

    Thank you for this article, it made me smile a bit too :)

    Elisa

  7. Judy says

    I’ve often thought that one of Ruth Bell Graham’s strengths was her capacity to enjoy mischief – she had a great capacity for fun, including at her own expense! Sounds like you and Joy might have some of the same.

    For those of us who tend to seriousness, this is a great reminder. Humorous DVD’s – very silly ‘ones like ‘The Great Brain,’ ‘Just William’ for younger ones and Canada’s Stuart McLean hilarious story-telling (free podcasts at cbc.ca) have often united our family in laughter – a lovely thing!

    • Sally says

      Thank you for sharing these ideas! And yes, we are grand laughers at our house. :-) It’s really a gift to ourselves and others when we look at the lighter side of life!

  8. Stephanie P says

    Oh gee….I am still giggling:) Thanks for making me laugh and for the reminder to laugh more. I know my kids wish I would stop being so serious all the time! Not sure when that happened but somehow I have forgotten how to have fun and how to be silly. The moments when I am though, my kids LOVE it and think it’s hilarious, especially when I try to dance with them:)

  9. Kali says

    hee hee… Thanks for sharing your story so we can all get a giggle too *G*

    I’m thankful that my parents raised me in a home with plenty of laughter. I’ve tried to continue that with my own family :-) Even now, walking through very difficult times, we can still find things to laugh about each day.

    There was a grocery store we used to frequent – in a fairly large city, not a small town one! – that we eventually found out we had been nicknamed “the smiling family” at by the checkers there. They apparently even talked about us to checkers we hadn’t seen, because a couple times we had a checker say “Oh, you must be the smiling family!”. It gave us a little giggle when that happened… but then we realized that really, it was just a little sad too that we were so completely outside the norm that our simple cheerfulness and laughter stood out so starkly. If only that could be the norm, instead of being noteworthy!

    Thank you, Sally – I think this is an excellent reminder for us all :-)

    • Sally says

      What a fun story! And you are so right about it being out of the ordinary. Perhaps smiles will start a revolution. :-)

  10. says

    I went to art class this summer with two different colored sandals on (accidently of course), Nobody even seemed to notice (hey it’s ART class afterall) My two girls doubled over in laughter at me when I got home though.
    And btw, the puritans get a pretty bad rap in the “fun” department but the true historical records show that that they were a very joyful people :).

  11. says

    Thanks for the ‘fun’ reminder. I lean towards the ‘intense and passionate’ end of the spectrum and it is just a delight to watch my boys unwind and go into fits of giggles when I loosen up and just laugh! :) It is always a reminder to do a whole lot more of that…

  12. Heather says

    So grateful for this message. Will u please pray for me that I will be able to apply it? It’s perfect timing for summer break. I get so caught up in “responsibilities” that I lose touch with having the heart of a child.

  13. Selina says

    Thank you, Sally! :))
    I needed to hear this today.
    Thank you for all that you do to encourage us as women.
    Love & blessings! :)

  14. Elizabeth says

    Thank you! I have thought of this quote many times and how easily it could be applied to me, except it might be more like my fear is that someone somewhere isn’t accomplishing something. It is hard for me to just relax and let those around me do nothing in peace, but I see such value in it. I was fun loving in my youth, but can easily lose that trait when I feel the pressures and responsibilies mounting. I want our home to be a place of rest as well as accomplishment.

  15. ElliejoyMobussell says

    Sally,
    You live a beautiful life. And again just want to say thank you for taking time and posting here. I look forward to it so much. It is so good for me to have godly roll modles. This job is so hard, parenting four young children, but thanks for the remainder to relax and laugh a bit. The other day we all took a spontaneous train ride to the beach ( we don’t have a car) bough a whole bunch of junk food( store bough whole grain snacks loaded with sugars and persevertives) the kids had hot dogs for lunch and ice cream and swam and the beach audit was just so fun, maybe not very financially responsible, but I remembered your advice to some times just take a break, and my kids thought that eating junk food was the best thing ever, and all they were eating is corn chips and cinnamon cereal .,…compared to the normal pop corn and cut up veggies and hard boiled eggs…..anyway thank you so much. You are amazing, and in those hard days I trust that some day too when my kids are adults I will see fruit . Already do , but mostly it feels like constant pruning time like …putting out fires all day long, fights, complaining, whinning, ……..

    So again thank you for teaching me that it is actually responsible to have fun every once in a while.

    Praying laughter and joy for you today and that one day your feet will visit us moms here in Israel. We could saw use a confrence. I can only dream eh. ;)

  16. says

    I have found that parenting is the least stressful when I’m having fun – with my child :) It’s so hard to remember to remember that when you have a million things to do, when you work from home and have deadlines and have to multitask childcare, your job, the house, dinner, etc., every single day (or nothing would get done!), but at the same time it’s amazing how much 30 minutes of play, of fun, of forgetting every thing else for a bit and sitting in the shade with a breeze just giggling together can refresh you, take away the stress of it all, etc. There is so much pressure on parents, to be doing the “right” thing all the time on a schedule. And it seems that everything I read about parenting or children involves warnings that if ignored lead to absolute catastrophes! There are so many warnings there isn’t room left for anything else. Never, anywhere, does it say, hey! You’re doing alright! Have fun! No one ever says don’t worry that your fun doesn’t involve something deliberately educational, that it doesn’t adhere to a parenting philosophy, etc. And fun doesn’t have to be complicated and involve super-momming (or whatever that phrase is). It’s not a competition, it’s a life, and if you don’t pay attention to the simplistic parts, the parts that aren’t choreographed to show other moms what a great job you are doing, that don’t follow rules in a book that will be completely obsolete in 5 years, you miss everything.

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