I read one story about a certain court jester who went too far one day and insulted his king. The king became so infuriated he sentenced the jester to be executed. His court tried to convince the king to have mercy for this man who had served him well for so many years. After a time, the king relented only enough to give the jester his choice as to how he would like to die. In response, the jester replied, “If it’s all the same to you, my Lord, I’d like to die of old age.” In this case, the good sense of humor of the court jester saved his life. It can be true for us as well.
We may not face a situation where our wit will save us from an execution, but our sense of humor and the ability to laugh at things has proven health benefits that extend and improve our quality of life. Even when we are in a dire situation or difficult challenges, the ability to enjoy and laugh at circumstances makes it easier to handle things lighter than it usually is, and somehow, cements our faith in God to come and rescue us in times of trouble.
Norman Cousins, in his book Anatomy of an Illness, wrote about how he cured himself of cancer by laughing a good part of each day. He rented films of comedies and watched them for hours on end in his hospital room. He had nothing to lose since he had been diagnosed with terminal cancer. His “experiment” turned out to be a classic example of the healing powers of laughter as he improved his health and eventually, cured cancer. If it worked for Cousins with a life-threatening illness, it can also work for us to enhance and protect our health.
We should laugh often and heartily but not of people to demean them but in a way that inspires hope and confidence. It’s good for our digestion and our disposition. Even the Bible says, “Rejoice in the Lord always.” Remember, life’s too important to take seriously. So, let us learn and enjoy every circumstance and experience we are being given.
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To your successful and healthy living,
Jake De La Cruz
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