Take Time to Laugh

Ecclesiastes 3:1-5
To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven . . . a time to   weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance . . .

How long has it been since you’ve had a good laugh? I mean a really good laugh that was so hard it made your sides ache? Recently I had the privilege of sitting down with some friends and just laughing and having a good time. When we parted we all left smiling--and we all left feeling better than when we arrived.

In the last 10 to 15 years, researchers have been given a lot of attention to the study of gelatology, the way laughter affects the human body, and have discovered that laughter is a natural stress reliever.  It improves circulation and muscle tone, and it increases your heart rate and certain hormones and endorphins so that you feel better. Laughing usually leads to a brighter outlook on life and is good for the body and the soul.

Isn’t it interesting that science has validated what wise King Solomon told us thousands of years ago? In Proverbs 15:13 and 15 he wrote, "A merry heart makes a cheerful countenance . . . he that is of a merry heart hath a continual feast. One of my professors in college used to say frequently, “Science is just now catching up with the Bible.”  Isn’t that the truth!

If laughter is that good for you, shouldn’t you make it a point to do it? Pick up a Reader's Digest magazine and read the humorous stories, or purchase a joke book that you can read from each day. Watch a funny movie, or read the comics in your local newspaper. Spend some time with a friend who has a good sense of humor. Make it a habit to share funny stories with your family from time to time. It may be hard to laugh when things aren’t going well, but in those very moments something light and humorous may be just what you need to pick up your spirits and help you handle your stress.

Solomon told us there is a time for everything, and certainly there is a time for laughter and rejoicing. My friend, take that time. Take just a few moments to find some bright spot to lift up your day. Take time to laugh.

Father, thank You for the wonderful gift of laughter. Let me never get so burdened down with care that I fail to see the moments of happiness peaking through the clouds from time to time. Refresh my body and mind with this marvelous gift.

By Ann Shorb
©Copyright Ann Shorb, 2006

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Related articles and devotionals:
Better or Bitter?
Using Anger to Help You
After the Resurrection


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