Some medicine, especially the liquid kind made for adults, simply tastes gross. Even when covered up by a fruity flavor, the medicinal bitterness can still activate the gag reflex. Hold a tablet too long on your tongue, and the bitterness gets overwhelming.

Children’s medicine, on the other hand, often tastes good. I actually switched to children’s multivitamin because the adult version did not sit well with me. As a bonus, the children’s tablets are chewable and taste a lot like SweetTarts.

Though there’s a strong argument for ours being an over-medicated society, we certainly still need medicine for healing and pain management. There’s another type of medicine we need, though, that doesn’t come from a pharmaceutical company.

A Joyful Heart

A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. (Proverbs 17:22)

Often mistaken for happiness, joy lasts far longer and penetrates far deeper. A joyful heart, the opposite of a crushed spirit, brings healing. How do we get a joyful heart?

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.” (Romans 15:13)

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. “(Galatians 5:22-23)

“Until now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.” (John 16:24)

“You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” (Psalm 16:11)

Unfortunately, we often seek joy in things and people and experiences. Those are children’s candy meant to disguise the bitterness of life. Those things may bring happiness, but they don’t result in joy.

Seek joy by seeking God and spending time with him. Let the fruit of the Holy Spirit flourish in your life. Ask for joy and allow it to fill you. Sometimes, simply not resisting the medicine offered us is the best way to fully receive its benefits.