There is little success where there is little laughter. – Andrew Carnegie
The most wasted of all days is one without laughter. – ee cummings
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. – Philippians 4:4
A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. – Proverbs 17:22
Based on the comments I’ve heard from many of you, this is officially “crunch time”! I know you are all super busy with end of term projects and papers AND that you have finals looming quickly after next week’s break. However, in the meantime, it is my hope that in the midst of all of this you find time to stop, enjoy the world around you, and maybe even smile or laugh. Did you know that laughter, in addition to making you feel good in the moment, is actually good for your health? According to my not so extensive research online (cuz everything online is correct, right? But seriously . . .) there are LOTS of benefits to laughing. Did you know a good laugh can:
- Relieve physical tension and stress even relaxing your muscles for up to 45 minutes after!
- Lower your blood pressure.
- Boost your immune system by decreasing stress hormones like adrenalin and cortisol and increasing infection fighting cells like T-cells!
- Trigger the release of endorphins giving you a sense of well-being and sometimes temporarily easing pain.
- Dissolve distressing emotions – it’s hard to feel anxious or angry when you’re giggling!
- Improve alertness, creativity and memory.
- Help you focus and accomplish more by reducing stress and increasing energy.
- Give you a new perspective, through humor, creating psychological distance from a problem and helping you avoid feeling threatened or overwhelmed.
- Increase your memory and learning according to a study at Johns Hopkins University Medical School.
Humor guru William Fry, M.D., of Stanford says that, “Humor and creativity work in similar ways by creating relationships between two disconnected items, you engage the whole brain. Humor works quickly. Less than a half-second after exposure to something funny, an electrical wave moves through the higher brain functions of the cerebral cortex. The Left hemisphere analyzes the words and structures of the joke; the right hemisphere ‘gets’ the joke; the visual sensory area of the occipital lobe creates images; the limbic (emotional) system makes you happier; and the motor sections make you smile or laugh.”
What a gift we have in the ability to find humor in even rather daunting situations. So, I encourage you, if you’re feeling the stress of the term, if you have a challenge to face, if you are feeling crummy – laugh in the face of it all! And what better way to share the yucky and laugh through it all than with friends and in the presence of a God who loves you more than you can imagine? Below is a list of opportunities this week. If you want to chat (or laugh) over a cuppa coffee or tea, gimme a call or text and let’s find a time (my digits are below). Know that you are each and every one in my prayers.
Week of November 12-16
5:30 pm – Supper with Substance – We’ll meet again at CENTRAL PRES (corner of 15th & Patterson, enter off the alley) to stay warm. This week we’ll be laughing together and enjoying a yummy meal of soup and bread. Following dinner we’ll have time to talk and pray together.
6:00pm -7ish- Worship on Wednesdays @ Westminster – located at the corner of Coburg & Harlow Roads. This is a short mid-week contemplative worship service. If you wish, there is also a light meal before the service which you are welcome to attend – college students eat free. Meal at 6, worship starts around 7.
6:30pm – Adult Education @ Central Presbyterian Parlor – located at the corner of 15th & Patterson – They are beginning a study of the book Moses: A Stranger Among Us by local Rabbi Maurice Harris. Even if you haven’t read the book, if you’d like to show up for the conversation, you are more than welcome.
Presby Pub – A time of Bible study and conversation for 21+ This week we’ll continue the “moveable feast” so stay tuned to Facebook for details!
8:30am -Worship at Westminster Presbyterian (Corner of Coburg & Harlow Roads)
10am – Worship at Central Presbyterian (15th & Patterson) – Potluck following worship – free lunch for students. Church will provide soup and members will bring salads and bread.
10am – Worship at Peace Presbyterian (3060 River Road)
11am -Worship at Westminster Presbyterian (Corner of Coburg & Harlow Roads)
THANKSGIVING – if you will be in Eugene for the brief break and are looking for a feast to join that Thursday, let me know!
Message sent by
Rev. Jennifer Martin
Campus Pastor & Executive Director
THE KOINONIA CENTER
Presbyterian Campus Ministry at the University of Oregon
Eugene, OR 97401