Organize Your Attitude #38
You know those days. Those terrible no good days where we just can’t seem to pull ourselves together, even after two (or three) cups of coffee.
Sometimes we have to choose the right attitude before we feel it. If we wait for our feelings to lead the way, we’ll be left nursing hurts and holding grudges. We’ll be left with our coffee dregs and headaches, feeling miserable.
It’s tough. Feelings are powerful and insensitive to reason. You can’t just shut them off.
You have to actually exchange them, not ignore them or stuff them. Changing our attitudes is a positive action we have to take, even in the midst of feeling crummy.
There is one tool that works faster than any other: Laughter.
Even if it’s watching a funny video or some other external prompt to elicit seeming-surface laughter, the act of laughing can diffuse anxiety and grumpiness faster than anything.
Proverbs 17:22 – A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.
Choose to laugh. Help others laugh. Put yourself in the way of humor – any kind of humor that will cause you to crack a smile and loosen up – and feel the tension dissipate. Then get going, sweeping the tension clear and choosing to do more of the right things and less wallowing.
Laugh at yourself.
A glad heart makes a cheerful face, but by sorrow of heart the spirit is crushed. Proverbs 15:13
Laughter comes from a humble heart, a heart not weighed down with burdens. It doesn’t come from a heart that is full of itself.
When we are face-to-face with our inadequacies or our failures, yes, we need to repent, and repentance often comes with tears, but we should also laugh.
God made us human. He did not make us machines.
He made us a little lower than the angels, and then we fell further – but He knows that, and He redeems us.
Humor comes from realizing discrepancies: It should be like that, but instead it’s like this.
Humor perceives ridiculous inadequacies and instead of bustling in to meddle and set things right, a humorous and humble mindset accepts them as a part of reality, something in God’s hands to work out.
Laugh with your children.
Laughter is a key to building strong relationships. It’s a concrete practice that builds camaraderie and communion.
The more we can laugh at ourselves and laugh with our children, the healthier and more resilient will be our minds and the better and stronger will be our relationships.
Laugh because of Christ.
Then our mouth was filled with laughter, and our tongue with shouts of joy; then they said among the nations, “The LORD has done great things for them.” – Psalm 126:2
The only reason we can laugh at the discrepancies in ourselves, in our families, and in the world is because Christ has come and will set things right. If we are in Him, we can rejoice and praise Him for all He has done and will do.
Read Psalm 2. God laughs at proud, evil men. So can we, because we hope in Him. So can we, even when that proud, evil heart is our own – because God changes our hearts and has made us right.
Joy – even laughter – is the response of a grateful, trusting heart. In laughter our stress and anxiety melts away. Laughter, even in the face of trial and temptation, is an act of faith.