Our theme for this month: “The Gift of Being Yourself”
Our Bible verse for today: “Better one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked.” Psalm 84:10 (NIV)
Our thought for today: “Humility and humor are wonderful virtues.”
Yesterday I told you about my old friends Dick and Jean DeGrow. Dick and Jean were two of the most relaxed, settled, and serene Christians I have ever had the pleasure to know. They were truly comfortable with themselves and with each other. Part of the winsomeness of their personalities came from the fact that they were both humble and they each had a wonderful sense of humor. But it was self-deprecating humor – they directed it mostly at themselves and at each other. They told jokes on themselves and they teased each other in a good natured way.
In terms of humility, Dick was an especially good example. He was a former Pastor but at 74 years old he served as a deacon, Sunday school teacher, and custodian in our church. One day I was in my office writing a sermon and Dick was at the church cleaning and emptying trash. At one point he stuck his head in the door and asked, “How’s my Pastor today, is there anything I can do for you?” I looked at him, smiled, and asked, “Dick, why do you serve as the custodian here? You’re a retired Pastor. You don’t need the money, and I could easily get someone else to do this. Why do you do it?” He looked at me and said, “Pastor, I would rather clean toilets in the house of the Lord than be the CEO of a big company.” Then he smiled and said, “You have a nice day” and he shuffled away to do the cleaning.
In terms of humor, Dick and Jean were hilarious – always cutting-up and always teasing each other. I mentioned yesterday that Dick loved his ice cream. Eating ice cream was a nightly ritual that he never missed. Once Linda and I were visiting with them, just shooting the breeze and enjoying each others company. At one point Dick mentioned to Jean (as he was eating ice cream) that he needed to buy some new pants because his old ones were getting a little tight. Jean told him that if he would lay-off the ice cream his old pants would fit just fine. Dick responded that eating ice cream was a spiritual discipline and it was helping him to get ready for heaven. Skeptical, Jean asked how eating ice cream could be a spiritual discipline and how it was getting him ready for heaven. Dick then informed her that in heaven ice cream is good for you and it’s broccoli that has all the calories! (I’m not sure how Dick knew that but he was a very spiritually mature man so I trust his insight!)
Humility and humor are endearing qualities in a person’s personality. When we’re able to be humble and when we easily engage in good-natured humor it’s a clear sign that we don’t take ourselves too seriously and we have learned to relax and lighten-up.