people live longer. That is the conclusion of Marilyn Elias writing
in USA Today. She quoted Beverly Bennett of Duke University Medical
Center as saying, “People could potentially extend their life spans
with positive emotions.” Brummet’s study followed 866 adults who had
heart disease. Cheerful patients had a 20 percent better survival
rate. Why the improvement? There are several possible factors. It
appears that cheerful people are less likely to produce damaging
hormones. Happy people also enjoy more social support. Whatever the
underlying cause, we should not be surprised. After all, the Bible
reminds us that a merry heart is like medicine and the joy of the
Lord is our strength.
J. Michael Shannon is professor of preaching at Cincinnati Bible College in Cincinnati, OH.