(Note: The following is an adapted transcript from one of my former iBelieve video devotions.)
I’ve found, I most need to laugh when I least feel like laughing. For my mental health, for the health of my relationships, and sometimes for the perseverance to push through challenges. When I feel anything but cheerful and humorous, that’s precisely when I need to find a way to intentionally bring sunshine into my day.
Years ago, when my husband and I were fighting for our marriage, and I mean fighting–for a relationship we’d mentally given up on only months before, we learned we needed to take time for fun. Especially when working through difficult stuff. And I have to tell you, that was hard. My pride tempted me to isolate myself, but our counselor told us we needed to take time to play. Otherwise, she warned, we might forget why we fell in love and that we weren’t enemies, regardless of how we felt in that moment.
While I wish I would’ve done this more, I intentionally found ways for us to laugh, together. I purposefully cultivated silliness into our relationship and our home. I believe this became the glue that held us together and kept our hearts soft toward one another when the stress of life could’ve pulled us apart.
When life feels really stressful, like I have more to do than time to do it in, I know I need to intentionally set an afternoon aside to fortify my soul with laughter.
A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.
Maybe you’ve felt the last half of that verse. Maybe your life this year has felt anything but cheerful. Maybe laughter has all but disappeared from your home, from your relationships, and your heart. I’ve been there, and man, is it hard. Much too hard, in fact. And when I land in that place, I intentionally find reasons to laugh.
At first, it might feel fabricated, forced. But soon, it becomes a habit, one that fills my heart with joy and soon spills from me, contagiously. It changes the tone of my home and my relationships for the better.
Try it, because right now we could all use all the sunshine we can get.
These videos may help:
And make sure to catch this week’s Faith Over Fear episode: