A joyful heart is good medicine,
but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. Proverbs 17:22 ESV
Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven,
whose sin is covered.
Blessed is the man against whom the Lord counts no iniquity,
and in whose spirit there is no deceit.
For when I kept silent, my bones wasted away
through my groaning all day long.
For day and night your hand was heavy upon me;
my strength was dried up as by the heat of summer.
I acknowledged my sin to you,
and I did not cover my iniquity;
I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,”
and you forgave the iniquity of my sin. Psalm 32:1-5 ESV
Ricarda is a nurse in a hospital, and she thinks it’s a very challenging job. Ricarda has to make sure that her patients get the correct medicine and treatments. She has to watch and examine them and see if there are any changes in their condition that the doctor should know about. Nurse’s aides help her get the patients clean and dressed, and they usually take the temperature and other vital signs, but Ricarda has to make sure that it all gets done and check to see if there’s anything to be concerned about. She has to make a plan for each patient’s care. But for Ricarda, one of the most important things she does is to talk to the patients. She tries to give them encouragement and hope, especially if they feel depressed or discouraged. If they are afraid, she tries to give them good information and to calm their fears. Ricarda knows that one of the best medicines for getting well is to be happy and positive. Feeling hopeless and negative often means that patients don’t do as well.
Medical science has come to know what the Bible taught a long time ago, and that’s that happy and cheerful thoughts are like good medicine, but negative feelings can make you feel sick. God made us whole people, and our bodies and our minds and spirits all work together. Do you ever get a stomachache when you are worried about something? Or a headache when you have had too much stress? These are examples of your body being crushed with the weight of worry and fear.
The worst kind of stress your mind or spirit can ever know is the fear of God’s punishment and the guilt and shame of sin. Even the best nurse in the world can’t take that heavy burden away from us, and there’s no way we can have positive thoughts of our own that could pull us out of this trouble. But God sent Jesus to be our Savior, and Jesus took all the weight of our sins on himself. He took them all the way to the cross and paid for them there. Because of Jesus, all our sins are forgiven, and we can go to our loving heavenly Father with all the other things that worry and trouble us. He is always there to listen and to help and to give us the joyful hearts that are good medicine for our bodies and our whole lives.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for forgiving our sins and for giving us calmness and joy in our troubles. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.