Joyful Medicine

Proverb 17:22

A joyful heart is good medicine.

I was watching a movie over the weekend and noticing that the lead actor had a propensity towards smiling. It put me in remembrance of another movie I watched where the male lead seemed to struggle to smile. Just watching the movie, I didn’t like that guy. It turns out that a joyful heart is good medicine to those around you as well as doing amazing things for your health.

You have heard that smiling and laughter, especially belly laughter aids health. As I have grown and watched people, I have learned a bit about our emotional content and our health. Because of what I have learned, I try to remain at peace. It isn’t always easy to do, is it? Do you know this verse, Romans 12: 8,As much as it is possible, live in peace with everyone.” That is not just spiritual advice, it is health advice.

Do you know someone who always seems to be embroiled in some kind of mess? Or someone who seems angry all the time? Maybe you know someone who is gruff. They are doing themselves harm. God gave Paul this message about remaining at peace. At the time Paul received this “Word” from the Lord, he may not even have known the full purpose of it, but this I have learned. Being upset or angry is damaging to your body systems. I believe a person can do serious damage to their heart with these destructive emotions. We know that negative emotions inhibit digestion preventing the body from even nourishing itself.

We’ve all been through a couple of tough years. People have carried more stress, worry and anger than is healthy. Meanwhile, gyms were not always available to work off those toxic emotions. Now is a good time to do some healing. You need to work through your emotions with the Father. Talk with Him about the things that have upset you. Release those emotions to Him and ask Him to restore your joy. Meditate on Jesus. Imagine seeing Jesus face to face. How would you feel if you looked into his eyes? Push away all the bad emotions because, believe me, they are killing us. Let God’s love pour over you like warm honey. Find your seed of happiness and water it. And, can I say, turn off the stressful movies for a couple of weeks and find some that make you laugh out loud? It is healing and brother, we all need some healing. Let joy and laughter be your medicine. Take at least twice a day.

Mirror Image

Hebrews 1: 3       TPT

The Son is the dazzling radiance of God’s splendor, the exact expression of God’s true nature—his mirror image!

Jesus is the exact representation of God. You can see some great expressions of this idea by reading this verse in a variety of translations. Here are a few:

WE – He is just like God himself,
CJB – The very expression of God’s essence,
NLV – The Son is as God is in every way.

When you look at Jesus, you have seen the Father. That is such an important statement. If you love Jesus, you can feel safe with the Father too. So many people have a poor, even antagonistic relationship with the Father even though they say they love Jesus and confess him as Lord. This ought not be. I don’t know how we have gotten so brain-washed about God’s character. All we have to do is believe the Bible; well, and read it, to see that He is kind and good.

I have observed something else lately. I guess I’ve been seeing bits and pieces of this for years, but Jesus really brought it home to me over the last two weeks. Who we see and experience Father to be is greatly influenced by who we are in our inner selves.

I had noticed that God speaks to each of us in our own voice, tone and manner. When I would hear people relate things the Father spoke to them, I could hear their world view and voice. I remember Kenneth Copeland sharing something the Father communicated with him and I thought, “God, never speaks to me that way.” Later I realized it has everything to do with our different personalities. We do the same thing. We allow ourselves to reflect the communication patterns of those with whom we converse. So, when Jesus or the Father speaks with you, they will use syntax and colloquialisms that you use. That’s cool!

There is a deeper reflection on this too. It goes beyond communication to relationship. Listen to how people describe God or their communion with God. What you will hear has a lot less to do with who God is and more to do with who they are. Jesus reflected God with whom He was connected. You will find that he reflects you too. The thing that brought this into clear focus for me was when Jesus made a joke one day last week. I began speaking with him and Father about their sense of humor. They really do have quite the good sense of humor. People admit that casually and reference giraffes as their evidence. During this conversation, Father showed me that the sense of humor, the flavor of humor that I was experiencing was my own sense of humor. God was reflecting me.

How many people, though, actually know God’s sense of humor personally? You see, if you don’t have humorous nature, Jesus and God will not be able to relate to you on that level. Whatever you give to them is what they have to reflect back to you. A friend of mine caught me calling Jesus “Dude” this week. Okay, people don’t usually refer to him that way but in our closeness and the closeness of the moment, it worked. It reflects our relationship. Later in the week I was working on a Word of the Day when he quite literally made me laugh out loud. Here I was, sitting all alone, laughing aloud. It took me a moment to compose myself. Jesus is funny.

People who are afraid of God, don’t know Him. If they think He is vengeful and judgmental it is because that is what they impose on Him or carry to the meeting themselves. Those who don’t trust Him, are afraid of Him, or think He wants to take something away from them are reflecting themselves onto Him. They won’t let Him express His true nature which is love. He is love. When will we get that? His essence is kindness and gentleness. Endeavor to know God better. Get to know the many facets of who He is. To do that, begin with what you take to Him. Take a light heart and maybe He will tell you a joke too.