Beloved, I pray that in all respects you may prosper and be in good health, just as your soul prospers (3 John 1:2).

I love how the apostle John spoke here to his friend, Gaius. There is so much graciousness and love for his friend. John had heard how well Gaius was doing spiritually, how he was blessing those around him, and the news thrilled John.

He also cared deeply about how Gaius was doing physically. I believe John’s words were healing to Gaius. Proverbs tells us, “A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones” (Prov. 17:22).

Do you have a friend like this? Someone who cares deeply for you and your happiness? If so, it makes a difference, doesn’t it?

I have a friend who lives in California. He’s a medical doctor and I have known him since sixth grade. To this day, he cares how I am doing both spiritually and physically. When I am visiting him or speaking to him, he is like John was with Gaius. I know he always has my best interest at heart. I wish everyone had such a friend!

Now let me ask you a question: Are you a friend like this to those you know? Are you “good medicine” for those around you or are you someone who crushes the spirits of those around you? You know what I mean. We all have come across people who have sought to crush our spirit. Those encounters literally “dry up our bones,” as the proverb says. Likewise, when we are around people who are eager and invested for us to have a cheerful heart, it is the best medicine possible.

Feeling whole

Much has been written lately about feeling “whole.” I believe the most important part of feeling whole is a cheerful, content heart. I have witnessed quadriplegics having no use of their hands or feet who feel whole. I have met people with debilitating diseases who feel whole. How is this possible? They have a strong faith and a cheerful heart.

I have two suggestions for you as we begin this new decade together in regard to your health. First, I suggest if you haven’t done so lately, pick up the book Ministry of Healing by Ellen G. White and read it from cover to cover. I don’t believe there has ever been a greater book written on having good health and feeling whole. Not only does she cover the physical laws of good health, but also how we should relate to one another.

Second, I want to encourage you to be someone who brings “cheerfulness to hearts” and never be one who “crushes a spirit.” By doing this, you will be dispensing “good medicine” and building “strong bones” for those around you.