Smile, laugh, and take a really deep breath:
There isn't a beach for miles from my home yet on most mornings I can hear what sounds like the ocean yielding to the shore. It's The subtle sound of solace, inviting peace, like the earth stretching, yawning, or simply breathing- a sigh of relief; it's the morning wind, illusively traveling through the neighborhood trees, making a melody out of maple leaves.
It's pretty awesome actually. Some days it's easy to take for granted the beauty that surrounds us. The more I choose to acknowledge, appreciate and welcome this world of wonder, the less of it I lose in that wretched war of worry.
This week I asked my 4 year old son a question as we made our way to his school in the morning. I asked, "What do you love most about walking to school?". Without even the slightest hesitation he responded, "Running!", and took off racing down the street. Now if that doesn't make you laugh and smile you need to see a doctor ASAP. If you did laugh, but didn't smile you should still see a doctor, because to do the one without the other is a little weird, and kind of creepy.
Wait, before you commit to spending the day at ER, see if this works.
On Mother's Day, my beautiful wife and I, along with all of our children, visited my grandmother after church. Together we represented 4 generations in one room. As if that isn't sweet enough, we bought her flowers, and brought our babies too. Furthermore, the sweetness increased to cavity like proportions when my brother introduced the family to his brand new puppy, flash, who had a blast, with our babies.
Okay, so you should definitely be smiling ear to ear by now. Even if you're a steak eating, oil changing, weight lifting "manly man".
So what does any of this have to do with anything? Well, my hope is that after (or while) reading this you can take a few seconds to smile, laugh, and take a really deep breath. I've heard the saying, "Don't carry the weight of the world on your shoulders" -like atlas, right? Well, some of us look like we're carrying the weight of the world on our faces! Like, the Mona Lisa.
Granted many of us may be experiencing difficult times, challenges, due to various circumstances, most of which are likely beyond our control. Still, I hope that today regardless of what's going on, or what isn't going on in your life, I pray that you allow youself to smile, laugh, and take a really deep breath.
Why? Because it's been biblically stated, spiritually confirmed, and scientifically proven that smiling and laughing are good for your health (not only physically but also emotionally). Don't carry that burden on your back, or face any longer. Love and let go. Forgive and be free, believe and dream. Relax, rest and enjoy this wonderful life while you're alive. Smile, laugh, and take a really deep breath. God loves you.