A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. – Proverbs 17:22 NIV
There is an old adage that says, “Laughter is the best medicine.” Well, the is may be an exaggeration, but the proverb above is certainly true. Joy is one of the great characteristics of the Kingdom of God. (Romans 14:17 NIV)
What is life without joy?
Without joy, there can be no fun, no smiles, and no appreciation of the ecstasy of the Creator’s love. Joy is essential, and merriment in the service of the Lord is what makes it good. Or in the words of the psalmist, “Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him” (Psalm 34:8). Joy is the fragrance in the flowery meadow. It is the sweetness of spring berries. Joy is what brings righteousness and peace alive. They are all part of a whole.
Christians serve a joyous King, and we should be merry. We should bring joy wherever we go. As much as we should repent from sin toward the righteousness of Christ, we should turn to His joy and away from the fleeting pleasures of this world toward the lasting joys of heavenly things. Find the joy and merriment in everyday things where you find the goodness of God.
Where is the goodness of God you ask?
Is not the world full of grief and pain? To these questions and others like them, I would say there is yet good to be seen. Our Lord is faithful even when we are not. He gives hope when we are hopeless and devoid of faith. Furthermore, our God reigns indeed, and Christ’s reign over the Kingdom of God will continue until the end until even death has been fully defeated (1 Corinthians 15:26 NIV). Fear not, He is in control.
Though imprisoned and often tormented the Apostles understood this truth. Concerning difficulties we would face in service to Jesus Christ, Peter wrote “the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see [him] not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory: Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.” (1 Peter 1:3-9 NIV)
Call To Action: Our faith is rewarded now and forever with joy and peace that cannot be explained or fully understood but only experienced by trusting in the Creator and Sustainer of our lives. In the end, the salvation of our souls awaits all those that wait upon the Lord. What more do we have to be joyous about? Thus I say with the Apostle Paul, “Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice” (Philippians 4:4 NIV).
We, children of God, have been given incredible gifts, one of which is joy; and a joyful heart is good medicine. Let us share this with our neighbors near and far!
Let us bring the oil of gladness bestowed upon our Savior and rejoice. Never forget that a joyful heart is good medicine. And let the earth ring with the sound of our merriment. “Sing unto the LORD, all the earth; shew forth from day to day his salvation” (1 Chronicles 16:23 NIV).