Two of the greatest healing forces in the world are
available to you at this very moment. They are the healing power of
laughter and the restorative strength of joy. A merry heart is your
greatest weapon against deadly emotions.
The Bible affirms the healing power of joy when it says,
“A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a broken spirit saps a person’s
strength” (Prov. 17:22, NLT). This scriptural truth suggests that
laughter holds as much healing power as medicine. Is it any wonder that
those who laugh easily often live longer than those who do not?
When you laugh, powerful endorphins, which act much the
same way as morphine, are released in the brain. Endorphins trigger a
feeling of well-being throughout your entire body. So you see, a merry
heart really does work like medicine!
An enormous amount of research supports this fact. If a
person is happy and at peace with himself and his surroundings, he will
have significantly fewer serious illnesses than the unhappy person.
In the Department of Behavioral Medicine of the UCLA
Medical School, Norman Cousins conducted extensive research into the
physical benefits of happiness. He established the Humor Research Task
Force that coordinated worldwide clinical research on humor. Cousin’s
body of research proved conclusively that laughter, happiness and joy
are perfect antidotes for stress.
Long ago Isaiah wrote, “You will keep in perfect peace all
who trust in You, whose thoughts are fixed on You” (Is. 26:3).
A noted doctor once said that the diaphragm, thorax,
abdomen, heart, lungs—and even the liver—are given a massage during a
hearty laugh. That’s a good internal workout!
Instead of watching films or television dramas that drain
and depress your spirit, choose something that can put a smile on your
face and feed your healthy emotions.
Don Colbert, M.D., is a family physician and nutrition
expert. His latest book, What You Don’t Know May Be Killing You!,
is available from Siloam Press at www.charismawarehouse.com.