Kiss It BETTER (Five Minute Friday)

It’s the time of year. The drop in temperature, the icy wind, maybe even the ongoing lack of daylight had all served to bring on the familiar.

“My lips are sore,” I complained as I got in from work, the dryness and chapping having become painful by the end of the day.

“Here,” said my husband, before I could open my lip salve, “let me kiss them better.”

Suddenly, I was in one of those moments when time freezes and simultaneously plays the present in slow motion along with a hundred memories: my mum kissing the dressing on my knee after I’d fallen over in the playground yet again; my grandmother kissing the top of my head after another bout of tonsillitis-induced vomiting; me kissing my boys, on so many occasions, as I promised them that the pain of illness or injury or heartache would come to an end.

Sometimes kissing something better really does work. Research has shown that kissing and physical affection releases oxytocin, which modulates inflammation and promotes wound healing, as well as reducing anxiety, and promoting bonding and a feeling of wellbeing. It counters stress hormones and rebalances our immune systems.

And then I am reminded of that old hymn, ‘Here is Love Vast as the Ocean’, with one of my favourite lines as it refers to the crucifixion in these terms:

‘And heav’n’s peace and perfect justice
Kissed a guilty world in love.’

So Jesus’ death, reconciling us with God, bringing us back into His arms of love, was His way of kissing us all better.

It’s lovely to be back with the Five Minute Friday community of writers with the first link up of 2019. For those of you who are unfamiliar with them, we’re an international bunch of Christian writers, who respond to a prompt word with 5 minutes of flash-writing each week. You can find out more here:


4 thoughts on “Kiss It BETTER (Five Minute Friday)

  1. It’s always so much fun to see what one word says to each person differently. I like this reflection. I was just thinking while reading your post that the kids is also something that changes focus. When the distraction or pain is the focus it hurts and seems never ending. But when a kiss is introduced it changes the focus to love from another, trust in this person…aconnection that also might change the wiring in your brain as well too. Lovely. Visiting from the linkup. So happy to read your words.


    • Thank you. And yes, what a really good point, that a kiss changes the focus of attention, which rewires the brain. Glad to have you visit.


  2. I’d love to think a kiss makes it all better but I think it’s more that the kiss-er has stopped, cares about us, and is walking along with the kiss-ee – sometimes what we really want to know is that someone understands our pain, has empathy, and is interested in helping us navigate the next steps. Great essay and food for thought 💙


    • Yes, I’m sure you’re right. And the research that highlights the health benefits of kissing specify that it’s only within a context of a caring relationship that it works. But they have also found the physiological effects don’t happen without physical touch and there’s also evidence of the benefits of shared bacteria from kissing! So I think it’s a combination of both the empathy and the kiss that makes things better.
      Glad to have you visit.


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