God made laughter to show us that things are seldom as bad as they seem.
Laughter liberates and laughter uplifts. When laughter comes into a life, nothing is too difficult, nothing can defeat us. We can survive the noonday sun and the darkness of death and the grinding boredom of dailiness and still find life exhilarating. Other things in life change color like chameleons on plaid, but laughter is always ornament, always grace.
Laughter is an antidote to dualism, a necessary foundation of mental health. To the one who laughs, life is good, the world is good, goodness is the ground on which we walk. No dualism here, no fear of body or soul, no rejection of the tattered truth of our existence. Just gentle, gentle wholeness tenderly handled, lovingly held.
Finally, laughter enables us to live in a highly structured world without falling prey to the manacles of the mind that blind our eyes and cement our hearts. Laughter gives us the freedom of the Jesus who taught babies and poked fun at Pharisees and told winsome little stories, spiritual jokes, about women who would not let pretentious judges alone. Day after day he smiled his way from one theological absolute to another and left the world with enough to smile about until the end of time.
Once we learn to laugh and play, we will have come closer to understanding our laughing, playing God. The God of ridiculous promises is a God who laughs, a God to be laughed at and laughed with, until that moment when all pain washes away and only the laughter of God is left to be heard in the heavens.
There are some things that must always be laughed at in life: