The webmaster for a preeminent Catholic website and I have had a brief email discussion about humor in evangelization. His site is one of the best online resources for all things Catholic.
I’m a big fan of humor, don’t see it enough on the top websites and would like to do my small part in expanding its role. The webmaster, whom I’ll call Kevin because that’s a nice name, enjoys humor as well and is open to embracing and supporting more of the funny, quirky, satiric and clever offerings in the Catholic blogosphere. Especially as a counter to bad news. Besides, a substantive lesson uniquely presented has merit. He didn’t quite say it this way but I know that’s what he was thinking. (We’ll see––smiley face.)
My dog Lani and I are sitting in the grass watching three magnificent thoroughbreds display their agility, speed and spirit. They’re on the other side of the fence in semi wooded bliss; their frenetic bursts don’t last long but they’re a sight to see. If I were insane, I’d attempt to ride Princess bareback; she’d enjoy bucking me off and stomping my body into applesauce––in a playful kind of way. It would be short-sighted, however, because I feed her every day.
I should be enjoying these moments with my dog but I can’t quiet my brain. You see, I’m trying to think how cool it would be to hang with God for the day.
Of course, safe to say that isn’t going to happen in the material, buddy to buddy sense that I’m suggesting.
So maybe the next best thing is to shut my eyes, span the globe and imagine the wonders of His creation.
Since I own this reverie, I’m going to make it Utopian. Every rapturous moment going forward will be shared with my extraordinary wife, the love of my life. I created her moments ago but I can assure the world she’s one in a millennium.
Except for special occasions, I don’t play with imaginary friends but this daydream of mine allows me to do anything I want with anyone I desire. I could describe her as brilliant, saintly, beautiful and a trust-funder (I think it’s okay if she’s rich) but that shouldn’t be surprising. What’s so alluring about her, however, is that she has a phenomenal sense of humor. Laughter will be our elixir, our seductive philter.
I can see us now.
Weeks meandering the streets in Paris, London and Barcelona. Watching the Kentucky Derby, Wimbledon and Tour de France from the best vantage points. The Louvre, Smithsonian and British Museum will be private tours. Cathedrals, monasteries, and pilgrimages will deepen our Catholic faith. Exotic beaches, magnificent mountains and spectacular vistas will never get tiresome.
Wine tasting, bungee jumping and cow tipping will expand our horizons. A roaring fireplace, crashing surf and flowing rapids will be experienced on every continent. Reading, writing and painting will be an exquisite adjunct to our togetherness. And lastly, two becoming one, in love sharing time.
My dog is looking at me strangely. The bubble over her head reads: Cow tipping?
While I’m at it, I think I’ll plan a great day for Lani.
I’ll wake up first and feed her meat for breakfast. She’ll take a short nap on my heretofore off-limit bed. We’ll go outside and I’ll throw the rope toy one hundred times and then she’ll play in the sprinklers. We’ll go to an overpass and watch everybody go to work. We’ll hop on a four-wheeler and go to the beach, we’ll body surf and then she’ll chase me home. I’ll leave her alone in the kitchen, cupboards and fridge open. Give her an hour––truly heaven on earth.
She’ll nap at one; I’ll wake her with a body scratch. We’ll play ‘til three. She’ll lie in the sun until I sing at four. She’ll howl along. I’ll brush her by five, and then I’ll feed her a double portion of whatever I’m having. Finally, I’ll invite a million people over so she can say hi.
Sensing her gaze, I ask, “How’s that?” I don’t even need to read her bubble to know it’s perfect.
Back to me. I need to pause my chimera for a moment. Except for one paramount element, love, absolutely none of the above activities can crown this ultimate fantasy of mine. Or my reality, for that matter. Genuine happiness, pure joy, exquisite peace, can only unfold when it’s breathed on by love.
More to the point, without love in my life, I can have an infinite agenda of mind-boggling activities and wonders––a jet-set life––that will nonetheless seem incomplete. Almost senseless. Spiritually impoverished. Why bother with such frenetic pursuits as my raison d’être, albeit tempting, if the reward is only sensory and selfish.
I’ve been in love and I’ve been able to experience most of my fantasy musings. Nevertheless, if one had to choose between the two, a jet-set existence or love––romantic, storge, philia and agape in all their complementarity splendor––love wins without question.
The most amazing truth for humanity is that God is love. Think about it. When we are wrapped in majestic love, when our love is patient and kind and rejoices in truth, we are embraced by God and are close to Him. Without love in our life, God’s desire for us remains resolute but we have separated ourselves from Him. In those moments, life is woefully diminished. We are without God.