One often hears the saying – “Laughter – the best medicine.” Probably the old Art Linkletter show and the Reader’s Digest have gotten the most mileage out of that quip. While studies have certainly documented the physical benefits from good-natured humor, perhaps it would be more accurate to give Thanksgiving credit for being the best balm for both body and soul.
What is a better remedy and protection against bitterness and envy and discontent – emotions that have been proven to eat away at the core of our being — than to maintain the positive spirit of thanksgiving! For as it says in Proverbs “even in laughter the heart may be in pain.” (14:13)
Certainly God has much more to say about the priority we need to place on thanksgiving as opposed to laughter.
– Remember Daniel’s consistent practice was to go off in private three times a day to kneel down and pray and give thanks to his God. (Daniel 6:10)
– It is significant that as we partake of each meal, we don’t preface our ministry to our physical sustenance with a round of laughter, but rather with the offering up of thanksgiving. (Matthew 15:36)
– Some of the early ministers appointed to full-time responsibility before the Lord were Levites whose role was “to celebrate and to thank and praise the Lord God of Israel.” (1 Chronicles 16:4)
– “All the days of the afflicted are bad, but a cheerful heart has a continual feast.” (Proverbs 15:15) (a cheerful heart is a contented, happy, thankful heart)
– Certainly thanksgiving is directly linked to combating anxiety and allowing the peace of God to dominate our being. (Philippians 4:6)
But the above reflects more of a man-centered approach – how does thanksgiving benefit me? The Christian approach should be God-centered – where thanksgiving is the response of a heart that understands who God is and what He is doing for us.
Worthy is the lamb that was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing. (Revelation 5:12) AND THANKSGIVING!
Give thanks with a grateful heart
Give thanks unto the Holy One
Give thanks because He’s given Jesus Christ, His Son
And now let the weak say, “I am strong”
Let the poor say, “I am rich
Because of what the Lord has done for us”
– “Give Thanks” by Don Moen