Tom Douglas is a legendary country music songwriter who was recently inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame. His musical collaborators include country music stars like Miranda Lambert, John Michael Montgomery, Martina McBride, Tim McGraw, Collin Raye, and Lady Antebellum.
A few weeks ago I was in a Florida prison, visiting the residents of a faith-based dorm there. As soon as he saw me, one man named Richard came up to me and gave me a bear hug, even though the prison regulations discourage physical contact between visitors and prisoners.
Humor is a very powerful thing. It has the ability to entertain. It can connect people who otherwise might have very little in common and allow old friends to revisit happy times and places. A well-timed joke can relieve tension, foster conversation, encourage, bring cheer, and alleviate melancholy.
How are Christians called to serve our broken neighbors? In a sermon to Ridge Point Community Church in Holland, Michigan, Prison Fellowship Ministries President and CEO Jim Liske discusses the importance of being “people of restoration” for those in need of God’s healing.
In the aftermath of any senseless act of violence, we cry out, “Why?” We feel more vulnerable in the communities we live in. We reach out for solutions that would prevent something similar from happening in the future. But most often, we are left without any real answers.