I hope you enjoyed your weekend. Welcome back as we continue our devotional adventure, called "Shelter Me in Place" with part 4. I pray these are an encouragement and a blessing to you. Today, I want to share several very encouraging passages from the book of Proverbs.
Isn't it impressive how quickly we’ve all become experts in avoiding germs? Like:
Wash your hands.
Don’t touch your face.
Maintain social distance.
It also seems like God has something to say on almost every subject; including how to stay well and cure illness (but a different kinds of illnesses).
For instance, Proverbs says…
Scripture for today
Be not wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord, and turn away from evil. It will be healing to your flesh and refreshment to your bones. - Proverbs 3:7-8
Apparently, there’s a strong relationship between a humble acknowledgement of God and physical wellness. This might also explain why people who attend church regularly live, on average, seven-and-a-half years longer than those who don’t.
What might surprise you is how closely God lumps together spiritual and physical wellness.
Read these Proverbs out loud to see what I mean:
A tranquil heart gives life to the flesh, but envy makes the bones rot. - Proverbs 14:30
The light of the eyes rejoices the heart, and good news refreshes the bones. - Proverbs 15:30
A man’s spirit will endure sickness, but a crushed spirit who can bear? - Proverbs 18:14
A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. - Proverbs 17:22
Walk through these with me.
Proverbs 14:30 = A “tranquil” heart.
The word in Hebrew means, “yielded” or “peaceful.” If you can keep your heart at peace, it will have a life-giving effect on your body.
Proverbs 18:14 = (Physiologically and Medically) It is a proven fact that depressed people are more susceptible to disease.
Proverbs 17:2 = A cheerful heart is good medicine. This is one of my favorite. verses This is the only place the Hebrew word for “medicine” appears in the Bible.
What’s interesting about the second half of the proverb, “a crushed spirit dries up the bones,” is that long before modern medicine, the Hebrews knew that dry bones were sick bones. Medically, healthy bones have fat and moisture in their marrow.
Norman Cousins, the famous editor of The Saturday Review was diagnosed with “degenerative collagen disease,” and was given one chance in 500 to recover. He went to work on researching the biochemistry of human emotions and decided to combine massive doses of vitamin C with what he called, “Laugh Therapy.”
“I made the joyous discovery that ten minutes of genuine belly laughter had an anesthetic effect and would give me at least two hours of painless sleep,” he wrote in Anatomy of an Illness.
Cousins found out with his own research what God gave by revelation 3,000 years earlier: A cheerful heart really is good medicine.
Proverbs 15:30 = In the old King James Version, the second half of this verse reads, “a good report maketh the bones fat.”
Can I make a suggestion?
Maybe watch less news today. There's likely not going to be any “good reports” there anyway.
If you’re going to watch something, why not watch something that will make you laugh?
Make it your goal to participate in at least ten minutes of genuine belly laughter each day.
Better yet, why not set a goal of helping someone else experience ten minutes of belly laughter each day?
Prayer for today
Father, thank you for demonstrating, in Your Word, that You have a sense of humor and have created one in us as well.
Thank You for enabling our lips to curl upward at each end and make a smile.
Today, I am letting go of worry, anxiety, stress, and pain.
Help me to choose to laugh and find joy in my life.
In Jesus’ name, amen