“A merry heart doeth good like a medicine; but a broken spirit drieth the bones.” – Proverbs 17:22
Have you ever had a broken spirit? I have. As I recall those sad times in my life, I can surely understand the latter part of this verse. Phrases like, “It hurts to the bone,” or “I’m bone-tired,” or “All the way to the bone…” come to mind, but they don’t fully describe the feeling that goes with having a “broken spirit.” It is a deep and profound hurt.
In contrast, the first part of this verse offers both a prevention of and a treatment for the condition of a “broken spirit.” The treatment is: A Happy Heart. I would even suggest that your cheerful heart can often be like a medicine to someone else!
I love all the translations I have read of this verse:
New International Version
A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.
New Living Translation
A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a broken spirit saps a person's strength.
English Standard Version
A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.
New American Standard Bible
A joyful heart is good medicine, But a broken spirit dries up the bones.
How does one “get” and/or maintain a cheerful heart? I believe true joy is only found in a close relationship with Jesus Christ as personal Savior and Lord. If this is something you are seeking to learn more about, follow my link here.
If you are a Christ-follower but are struggling to find joy in your daily walk, you might join David from the Old Testament, as he prayed, “Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.”
- Psalm 51:12 (NIV)
Sometimes having a cheerful heart, regardless of circumstances, is quite a challenge. I want to work on that one.
Because I’m into health!
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