A cheerful heart is good medicine

A devotion on the benefits of remaining positive

I was recently having a very bad day. However, when I joined one of my many team calls scheduled for that day, someone said something in the first five minutes that made me laugh. My mood instantly changed for the rest of the week. 
 
That evening, I started thinking about the power laughter has in how we view the world and treat others. 

Happiness is a choice

When I was 13 and in the hospital for a broken collarbone, I was so upset about the pain and inconvenience the injury would cause me over the upcoming weeks. While my mom was completing some paperwork, an elderly woman observed me moping and came over to comfort me. She was so cheerful and funny that she immediately made me feel better. 

I learned during our conversation she had just lost her husband to cancer within the last 24 hours. I was so confused by her cheerful mood that I peppered her with questions. With a huge smile on her face, she quoted Proverbs 17:22: “A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.” 
 
Although it has been more than 35 years since my encounter with the cheerful woman who just lost her husband, I still remember it like it was yesterday. Since then, I have constantly been reminded of what Solomon assures us of in Proverbs 17:22. 

Positive thoughts help create a better outlook

Positive thoughts lead to a positive outlook which leads to a positive heart and a positive life. Negative thoughts lead to a broken spirit, which impacts our minds, emotions and our lives. 

It is my hope and prayer you all remember to take time to laugh and be cheerful every day as God commands it. In fact, God tells us to be happy more times in Scripture than any other command. Commands such as “rejoice,” “be of good cheer,” “do not be afraid,” “give thanks,” these are all ways of God telling us to be happy.

“I have set the Lord always before me; because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken. Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices; my flesh also dwells secure.” – Psalm 16:8-9

Written by Jeff Gentry, senior vice president and chief financial officer at Buckner International.

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