Christian Living

When Jokes Laugh You Into Sin

[eltdf_dropcaps type=”normal” color=”” background_color=””]L[/eltdf_dropcaps] ike all fairytales start; one day, on a beautiful summer’s day in the beautiful town of Johannesburg, there was a princess named Tsholo. She was soft spoken and laughed so gently and eloquently. Then one day, someone lovingly asked her, “what are you doing!?”

Okay, that’s where the fairytale ends. I don’t even think it was a summers day, probably winter. Either way, it was pretty awkward, because there I was, trying to be like some of the ladies I look up to in the church. You know them right? Those ladies that speak softly and rub your arm ever so gently when talking to you.

But who was I trying to fool? I’m the loud, shake-like-I’m-having-an-epileptic-attack when something is really funny kind of girl and I had suddenly turned into this quiet person – people thought I was sick! Maybe even thought I was in mourning. It just wasn’t me.

I should be careful here before I say “be yourself”, because, uhm, Jeremiah 17:9 is quite the verse to chew on. What I’m trying to say however, is that trying to balance my personality (which is pretty much loud and out there) and learning to maintain a graceful and kind spirit is a slow process for me.

For example, I enjoy making jokes, that’s part of my extroverted nature. However, it’s so easy for the jokes I make to be mean spirited – thus not in tune with a graceful and kind spirit. At the time, the jokes really seem funny. But getting home and really thinking about it, I almost always see that I made a joke at someone else’s expense. How much worse is it when that person knows you as someone who claims to be Christian, yet you make fun of people and leave them feeling hurt?

That’s not even the main issue though; the issue is me, why do I find fun in degrading or embarrassing a person? Pointing out where they are lacking in, what they are weak at or whatever flaw it is, just for the entertainment of me and those around me? Can I honestly claim that this “is just my personality”? Or rather, do I do this because of how cool and relevant I’ll be among the people I’m with at the time?

Sometimes, while in the midst of making jokes I can see that I’m getting carried away and I should stop, but I keep going because I have the attention of everybody in the room and I am the one making them laugh. In those moments I can see that I have a choice between keeping the attention on myself or simply “dying to self”, obeying God and just keeping quiet.

I know for some folk this seems like something so simple and easy to do, and thank the Lord for the grace He’s shown you in that department. But for me, it’s a daily struggle to not make everything in this life all about me but rather be about God and about glorifying Him.

[eltdf_blockquote text=”The wickedness in my heart shocks me, I don’t know why, because we’ve already been told that the heart is wicked above all things, and no one can know it. Yet even in the midst of such wickedness there’s hope -” He that began a good work in us will surely perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus”!” title_tag=”h2″ width=””]

Therefore, we should not lose hope because of how we fail; Jesus Christ has succeeded on our behalf and is seated at the right hand of the Father interceding for us always. None of us have obtained salvation through our own works and so we should not look to ourselves to think we’re able to persevere to the end. Instead, we should always trust in Christ and depend on Him because He has already done the work for us.

 

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