Bernard Martin, writes the following story in his book If God Does Not Die.
One day a pastor was called from a children’s party at the Sunday school to visit a young woman whose world had collapsed into an acute depression following the death of her husband in an auto accident. She had withdrawn from everyone and shut herself in her bedroom with the blinds pulled, and she didn’t communicate with anyone, including her children, because she said they reminded her of her dead husband. The minister left the party in a show of confetti which the children had thrown at him. He brushed it out of his hair and from his coat as he prepared to call on the depressed woman.
When he arrived at the woman’s house, he entered her darkened bedroom and told her who he was, but there was no response. He could faintly see her pitiful form lying motionless on the bed. He tried to carry on a conversation with her, but she was unresponsive. He reached out to touch her hand, but it lay lifeless in his. So he just sat with her in the dark silence for a time.
Then he decided to act. He wanted to see the woman face to face, to read Scripture and pray. So he turned on the bedside lamp. The woman blinked and stared at him blankly. As he took out his Testament which he carried in his handkerchief pocket of his jacket, and opened it, confetti fell from it all over the bed. After an anxious and flustered moment, the minister burst into laughter. And that did it. First a smile appeared on the woman’s face, and then she broke into quiet laughter. She reached out her hands to the minister in the joy of resurrection. They prayed together and she left her darkness to return to the light.
Indeed “A merry heart doeth good like medicine”. It is true what Bill Cosby said that “Through humor, you can soften some of the worst blows that life delivers. And once you find laughter, no matter how painful your situation might be, you can survive it.” The story of this widow is an affirmation that “Against the assault of laughter nothing can stand.”- Mark Twain
Beloved, laughing is a free gift that is familiar to every individual irrespective of race, age, profession, gender, class, or continent. Its a universal language that doesn’t have to be learned. It refreshes. It heals. It brings health. Indulge in healthy laughter all through your life and you might just end up living longer…do not allow your sad experiences deprive you of this wonderful drug…do not hold back…laugh it off!