Give Me A Big Smile

While Dad was still with us he would not allow a day to pass without having me (or anyone else who happened to be around at the time) buy the day's newspaper. Even during the times when he was active - and therefore busy - he would go out of his way to make sure the house had newspaper. Since he left us for a place where the presence of God is infinitely more important, we haven't been as diligent; in fact, in the past weeks we've only bought the paper thrice, at most.

Today we had a reason to get one - insurance companies sometimes require claimants to have their picture taken with today's newspaper as proof of life. Shout 'Halleluyah' if you once thought that it was only kidnappers who needed to take those pictures. So as I was preparing my dinner, I saw the paper plopped on the table, stacked one section after the other with the full page condominium ads peeking out the edges, topped by the headlines. What's new, I thought as I picked those headlines up to scan the front page stories.

How was the news? Well... let me answer that by first saying that as a follower of Jesus Christ learns and applies more of the Bible in his or her life, complaining becomes second priority to wholeheartedly giving thanks to the Lord in all things. I have to admit that I was determined to type a storm about the news that was on the front page and how it disturbed me, but now, by God's grace, I will simply say that if this country, I dare say this WORLD has been excelling at anything, it is in reaching new lows every day.

I remember thinking maybe it's okay that we don't bother ourselves with the newspaper if this is the sort of news we read. That led to me thinking, 'Why did we buy that awful paper in the first place?'

I knew the answer was for proof of life. I actually saw the picture of my mom smiling as she held the paper up. I gave out a chuckle as I thought of that - She was smiling while holding up a newspaper which contained some spiritually and emotionally difficult and challenging front-page stories.

I took that as a lesson. I heard somewhere that if you love your enemy, you have conquered him. Well, if you smile in a given situation, you may have conquered it too.

Only God gives us the perfect peace for us to smile wholeheartedly, even if our day is a total wreck. Jesus Christ is truly our Prince of Peace, and not only does He provide peace to those who follow Him, but this sort of peace is not according to our flawed perceptions and definitions, but His infinitely superior peace, which goes above and beyond our own understanding.

"I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." - John 14:6

See, if you've given your life to Jesus Christ by accepting Him as your Lord and Savior, you are no longer limited to just staying focused on yourself or on the situations which surround your life. You will also have the option to look to the Creator of the Universe, the Ancient of Days, the Alpha and the Omega, in all that you're going through. He made you, and He knows you more than you know yourself. He loves you, and He knows what is best for you, even if it means going through situations we perceive as difficult.

I suppose that's one thing this house is prioritizing for now - to uphold our individual relationships with Jesus Christ, so that regardless of what sort of news comes to this house, our smiles will be powerful testimonies by themselves, for God's glory to be beheld, and for His saving grace to be known.

May the Lord's perfect will be done in all things that are going on in this world. May the Lord's perfect Will be done in our lives, our homes, our cities, our nations. In Jesus Christ's Name, Amen.

God bless you.

Posted in יהוה bless you!