A Merry Heart


_-----Proverbs 17:22 – A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones.

     Do you have a merry heart? The word merry comes from the Old English word merige, which means “pleasant.” To be merry is simply to be joyful, happy or festive. I wonder if we really believe what we read in God’s word, or perhaps I should state, do we really apply it to our lives? It sounds great, but how often do we actually use it?

     We know that it is profitable to our spirit to have a merry heart, but the Bible declares that it is actually “like a medicine.” Medicine is an agent that is used to treat disease or injury. It is something that serves as a remedy, or it can be a preventive measure and can be for the mind or for the body.

     When life strikes you a low blow or even just the day-to-day living drags you down, it is easy to lose the feeling of being merry. Sorrow, sadness, gloom and depression can easily consume our hearts, and we struggle to survive. Statistics show that depression affects approximately 19 million Americans, or 9.5% of the population in any given one-year period. At some point in their lives, 10%-25% of women and 5%-12% of men will likely become clinically depressed. In fact, it affects so many people that it is often referred to as the "common cold" of mental illness. It is estimated that depression exacts an economic cost of over $30 billion each year, but the cost of human suffering cannot be measured.*

     So, how do we become merry once again? For those who do not have the privilege of knowing the Lord, their first instinct is to pop a pill. With synthetic medications they will try to drown the sorrow or add brightness to their day. Let me offer to you Isaiah 61:3 which suggests to us “the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness.” What a great trade-off! There is always a reward given for offering praise, and it never goes unnoticed by God! When you feel sad, lonely, confused or depressed, try praising God. No matter what our circumstances may be, God always deserves praise. You will be amazed at how much better you will feel. So why not take a dose of medicine right now? You’ll be glad you did!


Source: National Institute of Health Publication No. 97-4266 and 99-3561 http://www.allaboutdepression.com/gen_01.html . Retrieved January 10, 2006.


Wanda Fielder



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