The Quokka knows how to smile.
Covid 19 goes on and on. Just when we think there might be a light at the end of the tunnel, there is another outbreak, a new variant. I’m finding it hard to maintain my energy and good feelings. Years ago scientific research declared “laughter releases positive healing endorphins in the brain that impact our positive mental and physical health.” (Laugh Yourself Healthy by C. & F. Hunter) Much older are the Bible’s many teachings about laughter, eg. “Being cheerful keeps you healthy. It is slow death to be gloomy all the time.” (Proverbs 17:22) “Today is holy to our Lord, so don’t be sad. The joy that the Lord gives you will make you strong.” (Nehemiah 8:10)
It’s too easy to forget about the good things when tough stuff overwhelms us. Last week I decided to track the laughter in my life. I want to be aware of those endorphins, to remind myself that the pandemic is not running my life.
I have discovered that, not only were there times of laughter, but even more importantly, I was ignoring opportunities for laughter. I felt so overwhelmed with emails that I was skipping Tom’s forwards from his brother Bob’s daily dose of laughter. I’ve been making a point of letting go and laughing out loud at every opportunity. And even more important, I’ve even been adding to other’s laughter. Zoom meetings have become fun, rather than an “ordeal of screen time”. Riley’s little mischiefs, even moments of aggravation at home are unending sources of laughter.
Just as I have learned to stop and truly see God’s spectacular sunsets, sparkling snow, a baby’s laugh, someone’s kindness, I am learning to join in God’s world of joy and laughter. My recommendation is for you to give it a try. Received, noticed, fully experienced laughter can lighten this endless pandemic for you too.
Remember: Laughter is God’s gift. A gift left wrapped is just a pretty parcel.
Another Smile Just For YOU!
Ruth Jones says, “Don’t be worried about your smartphone or TV spying on you. Your vacuum cleaner has been collecting dirt on you for years.