One of the most difficult things about being a pastor for me is that I have a pretty dark sense of humor. Now I know what you are thinking, probably something along the lines of… “Darkness oooo thats the devil”. I want to take a moment to explain what a dark sense of humor is really about.
First a dark sense of humor is not about the devil, demons and stuff it is actually centered around mystery. Like the line in the Hymn “Holy, Holy, Holy,” that says “though the darkness hide Thee, Though the eye of sinful man, Thy glory may not see”. Folks like me that enjoy dark things enjoy something that needs to be taken home and unpacked. We don’t like to get the whole joke right away because thats just cheap and easy. We like a funny thing that lingers and keeps getting funnier as time goes on. We like to watch funny movies that we need to think about before we get the joke. Movies like Donnie Darko, The Stepford Wives, Inglorious Bastards and Little Miss Sunshine take humor beyond fart jokes and one liners and into the realm of serious social issues.
Second a dark sense of humor is for folks that want a little more flavor. I like strong dark coffee, dark beer and dark humor. A little can go a long way though quantity is not quality to a person with a dark sense of humor. When I read a narrative in the scripture I tend to see humorous things in it that let me know it was written by a guy like me. Take for example the story of Ehud in Judges 3:12-30. The story is very funny in a dark way when you get past the surface of it. A left-handed dude named Ehud (lefty’s were considered somewhat handicap back then) gets past the kings guards with his knife probably because they search for it on his right thigh. Ehud then tricks king Eglon (a very fat and stupid king) into going upstairs without guards to hear a very special secret witch turns out to be a knife to the gut so deep that all his bowels fall out. Then on top it off all Ehud escapes out the toilet chute while the kings moron guards wait too long because they think the king is going to the bathroom. Hey listen, to a guy like me thats funny stuff because it took me a while to see all of that.
Third a dark sense of humor is about seeing more. As a pastor my sense of humor gets me in trouble sometimes. I have had to learn to dial it down. But it also helps me to see things a little different and to bring a different perspective to the table. I was raised in a loving home but broken enough that either I had to find a way to laugh or cry. Finding a way to laugh in adversity is often the breading ground for a dark sense of humor.
So “Can A Pastor Have A Dark Sense of Humor?” well I’m a pastor and I do so I guess they can. Have patience with us you will laugh later.