By Cynthia Ruchti –
Our local historical society stays busy resurrecting bits of history, restoring ancient artifacts, and maintaining a charming museum that draws more traffic than one would think for a small town.
The walls and displays and collections in the museum reveal a past, now invisible.
At one time, along the jaundiced-sounding, but intriguing, Yellow River, flourished a loud, but productive, lumber industry. It was so many years ago that no one alive today has sawdust on their shoes. A significant pottery business thrived, too, sometime in history. Fire destroyed most of the two-story buildings in town, twice, if I remember correctly. And out here where I live, eight miles from town, another village existed with a railroad interchange, or so the story goes. There’s no evidence in the landscape or the neighborhood. We can’t even see a dent where railroad ties must have been. But the historical society knows. And they’ll get the details right.
Devoted to preserving historical accuracy, they’ll inform me who was mayor when the first fire raged and how many times the physical therapy building changed hands before its current use—from mechanic’s shop to general store to fabric shop (that one I remember) to—Was there something between the fabric shop and physical therapy?
The historical society could tell me.
As respected as are the members of the historical society, I’ve sometimes wondered how popular a hysterical society would be. They’d laugh hysterically over the antics of the locals. They’d tell hysterical stories about the time the semi-trailer full of cheese broke down outside of town and the community youth group saved the day by rewrapping the cheese, earning enough money to keep the ministry going for another few months.
The laughing kind of hysterical society would gain a quick reputation…for preserving and restoring old joy.
In the book of Proverbs, we’re reminded about God’s thoughts on laughter. “Laughter doeth good,” He said, “like medicine.”
“Laughter doeth” is a nice historical and hysterical way of putting it, isn’t it?
PRAYER: Lord God, I sometimes act as if serious thoughts are the only valuable thoughts. But You told us it’s not only good and worthwhile but medicinal, healing, to laugh. Forgive me for the times I pushed laughter aside as a waste of time. Help me recall the history of the hysterical You’ve woven throughout life and find ways to give others the gift of laughter.
“A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones” Proverbs 17:22, NIV.