I started yesterday into some thoughts on laughing and smiling and as I did this I started out talking about Proverbs 17:22 and today I will continue looking at it.
Proverbs 17:22 -The New King James Version - A merry heart does good, like medicine, But a broken spirit dries the bones. Another Version puts it this way - A cheerful disposition is good for your health; gloom and doom leave you bone-tired.
What are dry bones?
The Hebrew translates this as to make dry bones. The dry bones that are mentioned in this proverb here signify unhealthiness and lifelessness. An example of this lifelessness and unhealthiness is found in the dry bones found in Ezekiel 37.
People who have a crushed spirit are often people with physical aliments. Those with destroyed minds are those whose health is never really very good. They always have a headache or a pain here and a pain there. They never have any energy to do things. Why? These people waste energy on things that they cannot change or on things that are a waste of time.
People who are like this are a pond that dries up because it has nothing flowing into it. People with a crushed spirit have nothing flowing into them and that is why the dry up.
What is good medicine?
Hebrew translation for this is a pleasing cure. The idea here is that a healthy and positive attitude brings about good healing or health. Two other Proverbs to look at with relationship to this would be 15:13 and 15:15.
Proverbs 15:13 – A joyful heart makes a cheerful face, But when the heart is sad, the spirit is broken.
Proverbs 15:15 – All the days of the afflicted are bad, But a cheerful heart has a continual feast.
People who have a cheerful heart have it show on their face because they smile. They also have a continual feast, which is a metaphor for enjoying life. These are people who are healthy and when they do get sick it is only for a short period. They have an abundance of energy most of the time and have a positive outlook on things to come.
These are people who have a constant flow of joy in their lives that refreshes them.
The idea of the verse – A person’s psychological condition affects one’s physical condition: a depressed attitude ruins health but a healthy attitude fosters good health.
So now that we know this we will then look tomorrow at what it means to have a cheerful and healthy mind. But before we get to that tomorrow let me ask you about today. Do you find that you have dry bones or good medicine? Do you have people that you are around that dry your bones and ones that are good medicine? When people are around you, do their bones get dry or do they find you good medicine?
It is my prayer that we all are good medicine to one another.