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“Say ‘Cheese’!”

Burdened. Heavy hearted. Anxious. Fretful. Fearful. Downcast. Pessimistic. Discouraged.

Are you encouraged yet?  Words like those listed above are not anyone’s favorite.  However, many people live in the dark clouds of those characteristics.  If they hear something that is positive, uplifting, filled with promise, victorious, or exhilarating, the feeling is that “joy” is for someone else.  How difficult it would be to live every day cut off from laughter and to live in the gray shadows of life afflictions.

Scripture says we were made in the image of God.  I believe that our God laughs!  When we get to heaven, the joy of our Father in having His children home will allow us to experience the joy of our Heavenly Father. I truly believe we will hear the most marvelous laughter ever from our God.  The Bible often speaks of joy, praise, rejoicing, laughter, etc.  So, if that is the characteristic of a Believer, how is it that the trials of life have left so many without even so much as a genuine smile?   Prov.17:22A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.

A smile costs nothing but gives much. It enriches those who receive, without making poorer those who give. It takes but a moment, but the memory of it sometimes lasts forever. None is so rich or mighty that he can get along without it, and none is so poor but that he can be made rich by it. A smile creates happiness in the home, fosters good will in business, and is the countersign of friendship. It brings rest to the weary, cheer to the discouraged, sunshine to the sad, and it is nature’s antidote for trouble. Yet it cannot be bought, begged, borrowed, or stolen, for it is something that is of no value to anyone until it is given away. Some people are too tired to give you a smile. Give them one of yours, as none needs a smile so much as he who has no more to give. (Copied).

James recorded in his brief book, Is anyone happy? Let them sing songs of praise.” (James 5:13).

When Haydn was once asked how it was that his church music was always so cheerful, the great composer made a most appropriate and beautiful reply. “I cannot,” said he, “make it otherwise; I write according to the thoughts I feel. When I think upon God my heart is so full of joy that the notes dance and leap, as it were, from my pen; and since God has given me a cheerful heart, it will be forgiven me that I serve Him with a cheerful spirit.”

There is one thing which Christ’s followers can do, and that is to keep themselves in the delightful atmosphere of His love. It is our fault and our shame if we spend our days in the chilling fogs or under the heavy clouds of unbelief, or in the contaminating atmosphere of con­formity to the world.  (Copied).  Come on…just a little smile?  Can you say, “Cheese”?