They say that laughter is the best medicine…whoever they might be!
A couple of google searches later and it would seem that there’s a lot of research to back up what “they” say. Laughter helps us to relax, boosts our immune system, burns calories (result!), combats depression, increases resilience and even relieves pain.
My own experience supports the research as well. I’m a huge fan of stand up comedy, panel shows full of witty banter and I will often put something funny on the television to lift a difficult day.
But is laughter always the best medicine?
What about those days where it’s difficult to even smile?
What about the days where life is hard and you’re facing situations where laughter is the last bottle you want to take out of the medicine cabinet?
During my time in the Proverbs 31 project, there’s been one line that I’ve consistently struggled with.
“…she laughs without fear of the future.”
Proverbs 31:25b (NLT)
Even in her darkest times when the future is uncertain, the Proverbs 31 woman chuckles to herself as she looks ahead to an unknown path.
As you can tell, the struggle with this line is real!
To work on this part of the project I decided to look at other translations and found this:
“…she smiles when she thinks about the future.”
Proverbs 31:25b (VOICE)
The VOICE translations feels like a stepping stone for me. Rather than laughing heartily at whatever might lay ahead, thinking about the future with a smile on my face seems like a good starting point. A smile suggests hope and a belief that there are better things to come. Choosing to smile helps me to focus on the good plans God has for my future, rather than the fears that sometimes consume me.
So, at this stage in the project, I will take a leaf out Job’s book:
“If I say, ‘I will forget my complaint,
I will change my expression, and smile,'”