I am not sure how many times my mind flipped topics on the way to Catch a Rising Star in Rhode Island. When I arrived at the comedy club I was ready to go with my set list created and my act prepared. When I arrived at the church the next morning, I had several ideas to incorporate into the eulogy. None, it should be noted, came from the comedy club the night before.
Blessed as I am, I was able to go from laughter to grief and back again in 9.3 miles. The reality of sharing jokes and laughter with a room of strangers melds into the reality of sharing prayers and tears with a sanctuary full of people – some strangers – some not come together to grieve. Both groups, dwelling on opposite ends of the emotional spectrum, touched my spirit. When we share our hearts with others we form a bond. It may be temporary- lasting only until the last comedian completes her final joke and walks off stage. It might be longer – when a stranger at the funeral tells a tale of the beloved lost that makes us realize we have a lot in common.
In my ministry and in my comedy (which, I still think of as part of my ministry) I discover again and again that the best and most healing laughter comes with tears and the best and most healing tears end in laughter.