Eight years old, award night, I didn’t receive a blessed thing until I got to the parking lot. I wish I could remember his name. At eight he gave me one of the most meaningful gifts of my childhood. His daughter had won an award but he took the time to encourage me.
He stopped me, bent down and prophesied over my life. “I noticed you smiling during the whole program. If there was an award for best smile you would receive it. Keep smiling.”
Recently at work one of the managers stopped to encourage me. “Your smile has been noticed and commented on by customers. It came up in a management meeting. Keep up the good work.”
I’ve told Chris before I’m not good at much but I’m a good smiler. Maybe at the time it was self depreciating or tongue in cheek but honestly it’s true.
I may want to call myself a writer but I have yet to discipline myself enough to finish a book and publish it and I’m not really ambitious enough to have pursued magazine publication yet. My education is incomplete. My non-profit dreams and vision for Serbian ministry have never materialized. I work at Cracker Barrel for pity sake. Thirty years later I still haven’t won an award. I’m still just a good smiler.
But honestly it’s okay. I smile because God put a spark of tenacious joy in me he wanted to share with others. I smile because I like people. I smile because I don’t know any better. I smile because my heart is glad. I smile because God reflects himself to the world through us in little glimpses and in my life it’s through a smile.
I love my smile. It’s a gift. A gift from God and to others.
Maybe you can relate. Perhaps life hasn’t turned out the way you would have liked. Maybe you haven’t been as successful as you had hoped. Or maybe you are one of those who has won an award.
The things we consider little details might just sometimes be the big ones. Maybe you express beauty uniquely, or have a quick mind, maybe it’s your voice, or a gift for generosity, or the ability to communicate love through a meal or hospitality, maybe you have a healing or comforting touch, or kind eyes that encourage. Whatever it is God, wants to reflect his nature through us.
“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord…” Colossians 3:23
Don’t despise the little things. It’s in the little things that hearts reflect, and receive, God.