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Pearls of Wisdom from Philippians 4: The Happy Christian

Rejoice in the Lord always, I will say it again: Rejoice!
Philippians 4:4

Since Jerry and I are usually early to any event, I have developed the skill of people watching. God really has a sense of humor. You realize this as you observe people.

We are all so different. God’s designs include the tall, short (I love them because I am one), chubby, thin, gray haired, brown haired, dyed- haired (whoops, I think that is from us), big nosed, and finally, smiling and frowning faces.

Paul’s letter to the Philippians encourages them to rejoice in the Lord. He didn’t say, “When your bills are paid, when the children are well, when you have a wonderful, caring husband, or when you have a fulfilling career.” He said, “Always.”

People watching  has led me to the conclusion that people with the smiling faces are many times the ones with the most problems in their lives. On the other hand, many of the frowns are there because of poor attitudes and not poor circumstances. Some of the saddest people in the world have the most material wealth.

Frowning Christians are poor witnesses for Christ. They have forgotten that God is sufficient for the peace and joy they need.

We had the privilege of traveling in Ireland several years ago. We were impressed with the joyful attitude of the Irish. Ireland is a poor country and really never recovered from the potato famine around 1845. The fact that there is little affluence in the land doesn’t coincide with the attitudes of the people.

 Cab drivers, market vendors, people on the streets, and basically everyone we saw wore smiles. The Irish are basically happy people. I remarked to Jerry that I would like to transport some of those smiling Irish to Tyler. They might be out of place among some of the impatient and disgruntled drivers on south Broadway.

We don’t always have a say-so in the circumstances of our lives. We do have control over our attitudes. Putting on a smile and rejoicing is a choice. A wise character, Brer’ Rabbit, sang a song whose lyrics went something like this: Every body has a laughing place/ a laughing place/ a laughing place/ Take a frown/ turn it upside down/ and you’ll find yours I know ho ho.

Dear Father, We have every reason to rejoice. Because of Your Son we have been given
                        the gift of life. Help us show Jesus by wearing a smile each day.

Janice Yandell                        

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