Reflections on Faith

Dear friends,

In this blog, you will find weekly reflections on life and faith. My hope is that, in some way, they will prove helpful to you in your daily living. May God bless you on the spiritual journey.

Andrew S. Odom
Pastor

07/11/2017 8:59 AM

Good Medicine

07/11/2017 8:59 AM
07/11/2017 8:59 AM
A cheerful heart is a good medicine, but a downcast spirit dries up the bones. (Proverbs 17:22)
 
As a pastor, I have seen people in all kinds of situations. I have been with families during times of sorrow and grief. I have listened to people share their deepest fears and their darkest secrets. I have tried to counsel others through difficult periods in their life. One thing I have come to believe in my years of ministry is that a good laugh at the right time can be a miraculous thing.
 
Eileen Russell, a clinical psychologist, talks about how easy it is to "become myopic about personal pain. We can get stuck in negative ways of thinking," she says. "But a sense of humor keeps you from going down too far.” Jesuit Priest James Martin further suggests that, “Humor helps us endure suffering by giving us something of a break and reminding us that pain is not the last word for the one who believes in God. Simply put, humor gets us through life.”

Humor gets us through life. Why is that? How is it that a good laugh at the right time can rekindle our hope that we might make it after all? The only reason I can think of has to do with the image of the cross when Jesus takes his last painful breath, and it is done. It seems death has won. But to our great surprise, on the third day Jesus was nowhere to be found. From the empty tomb comes a resurrection laugh that still cleanses our souls and fills us with life to this day. That’s why we can laugh. We can laugh together because we are no longer chained down. We can laugh together because we are filled with God’s holy laughter. Yes, we can laugh. It is a divine sign that death has lost its sting. It is a healing balm in a messy world. Laughter is good medicine.

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