Theology of a Smile

Yesterday was grocery shopping day.

Translation: yesterday was the day hubby & I got to spend 4 quality hours braving one of the busiest roads in the upstate, fighting the fracas of crazy drivers and rude pedestrians, and toiling through the most crowded Walmart in the area as it was undergoing store-wide renovations.

Re-translation: yesterday was not a fun day.

We were both overtired. Hubby had a late call in the morning that pushed his shift into overtime, giving him about 27 hours of work with only a few hours of dozing. I had slept, but not restfully, and was fighting a stubborn headache that was making me feel nauseous.The first stop at Whole Foods was thankfully quick, and the employee at Chick-fil-A was pleasant and competent. After that, however, we still had the bulk of our shopping to do at three different stores nearby.

Walmart was the longest and the most frustrating, as their entire store was being rearranged and many of the shelves were not yet stocked — or in one case, the pet care section had been moved to the back of the store, but the dog food was still in the front. It took us about 15 minutes just to find that one item! Not to mention some of the other items that they just didn’t have in stock that day. By the time we were on our way home, we were both worn out and ready for some rest and solitude.

It would have been so easy to drive home in sullen silence or to whine about feeling tired… but I knew how my husband was feeling and I knew that my attitude could either help him or hurt him. He’s told me before that, even when I am completely worn out, if I can just try to smile it would make a world of difference to him.

A simple smile takes very little effort, yet it can give an abundance of cheer to another — or at least give them pause before they frown or delve into self-pity.

I know, it’s not always the easiest thing, to think about smiling when you feel so run down. But why should we be taking out our tiredness or physical weakness by discouraging someone else? They are not the cause of our malady.

It’s not my husband’s fault I was tired; it just was. Why should I add to his already difficult day by withholding a mere smile? It’s kind of like going through “that time of the month” for us ladies. How easy it is to blame our irritability or pensiveness on our hormones. Yet, how does that make sense?

God made our bodies the way He wanted them — including any hormonal changes or physical weaknesses that we go through (like not sleeping well). Yet He commands us to “rejoice in the Lord always” (Philippians 4:4) and to give “thanks always for all things” (Ephesians 5:20). He also tells us that “His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness” (2 Peter 1:3). In other words, He has given us everything that we need to lead godly lives. More specifically, He has given us the power to rejoice and to give thanks in everything, even in tiredness or poor health.

Of course, that also means that not rejoicing or giving thanks would be sin, by disobeying His commands and by rejecting His divine power.

All that theology in just a simple smile…

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2 thoughts on “Theology of a Smile

  1. That was a good point about smiling.

  2. […] Our circumstances should not determine our responses (Theology of a Smile). 2. Our circumstances should not determine our responses (Certain Unalienable Rights). 3. Our […]

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