Today I had to have a chuckle. One of our daughters has some pretty entertaining and varied jobs. Today she was the Easter Bunny, with the whole white bunny suit, fluffy tail, glasses and Easter eggs. She has no trouble wandering through the shops spreading Easter joy and chocolate. A few days ago you would have found her dancing happily with crowds of children and brave adults as she “worked” entertaining at a festival in the city.
She makes me chuckle, as her energy and love of life is entertaining and exhausting all at the same time. I think she has decided the world needs a “Joy Revival”, and you know I think she may be right.
I tell my kids it takes more muscles and effort to frown than to smile. Unfortunately sometimes in life we can get caught up in a cycle of toxic thoughts and emotions, becoming to serious and weighed down by the weights and concerns of life to have fun. But having fun is infectious and will promote health and even make you smarter. Dr Carolyn Leaf a prominent neuroscientist says “our gift, which is our unique way of thinking, is neurologically developed when we have fun”. Its detrimental to our well-being to be too serious because it will breakdown our gifts and uniqueness of thinking. Proverbs 17:22 says “laughter is the best medicine”. It releases an instant flood of feel-good chemicals that boosts the immune system, increasing immunity and disease fighting cells. Almost instantly it reduces levels of stress hormones. It can even make growth hormones skyrocket by 85%. Why did nobody tell me that earlier?
Joy and laughter also get both sides of the brain working together, which is a key to releasing potential. Laughter also dissolves toxic emotions, and protects your heart as your body releases chemicals that improve the function of blood vessels and increases blood flow, protecting against heart disease.
God designed us, and He meant what He said when He said the joy of the Lord is our strength, and that a merry heart is like medicine. (Nehemiah 8:10; Proverbs 17:22)
Dr Leaf states that “fun through play and laughter is the cheapest, easiest, and most effective way to control toxic thoughts and emotions, and their toxic stress reactions. It rejuvenates the mind, body and spirit and gets positive emotions flowing”.
God encourages us throughout His word to give him our burdens, worries and concerns. Why? because they are fun inhibitors. He wants us to have joy in abundance. He actually loves to pour out ecstatic joy. Often we just need to make the choice to:
Get out of the way and embrace everything God has for you. Maybe that means getting out of your comfort zone and having fun by doing something new. Surprise yourself.
Recognise and be grateful for all the good things in your life. Focus on those positives, write them down.
Embrace every opportunity for life giving joy, and plan and look for joy triggers in your day.
Don’t be afraid to be a little silly; fun and joyfulness can be had almost anywhere, whether at a celebration or in the middle of a workday.
Watch your words. Are you complaining and nagging or are you finding good things to talk about? What you focus and talk about is what you’ll get in your day.
Spend time with Jesus. He is the ultimate joy giver who gives overflowing, abundant joyful life (John 10:10) Tell him you want to know Him more, and to talk with Him. He’ll answer. He says “I love those who love me; And those who diligently seek me will find me”. (Proverbs 8:17)
Be blessed with joy today. In Jesus Name Amen.