Life Notes: A Laugh a Day Keeps the Doctor Away
by Angie Thomas, Director of Lifeskills

A man goes into a pet shop to buy a parrot. The shop owner points to three identical birds and says: “The parrot to your left costs $500.” The man asks, “Why does the parrot cost so much?” The owner says, “Well, it knows how to use a computer; he can diagnose bugs.” The customer asks about the next parrot and is told, “That one costs $1,000 because it can do everything the other parrot can do, plus it knows how to configure UNIX.” Naturally, the increasingly startled man asks about the third parrot and is told, “That one costs $2,000. Needless to say, this begs the question, “What can it do?” The owner shrugs and replies, “To be honest, I’ve never seen it do a thing, but the other two call him Boss!”

Why is that funny? Have you ever wondered about that? Humans love to laugh. The average adult laughs 17 times a day. Laughter is a great thing-that’s why we’ve all heard the saying, “Laughter is the best medicine.” There is strong evidence that laughter can actually improve health and fight disease. The ability to laugh is helpful to those coping with major illnesses and/or the stress of life’s problems. Laughter brings balance to all the components of the immune system, which helps fight off diseases. There are also psychological benefits of humor. People often store negative emotions, such as anger, sadness and fear, rather than expressing them. Laughter provides a way for these emotions to be harmlessly released. I thank God for the gift of laughter. The Bible references 172 verses that speak of laughter and joy. Jesus said: “These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.”

Have you checked your joy meter today? Is it full? If you are running low, put more laughter in your day.

The Life Notes articles are written by staff of Louisiana Methodist Children’s Home and are published in The Ruston Daily Leader.

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