Smiles of Joy

“When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy.”– Psalm 94:19 (NIV)

Today is a gloomy, gray, and rainy day, and I’m sure many people may find their moods in the same place. Working from home, dealing with illness, keeping kids on task, job changes, loss… these things are our new realities and can have their challenges.

One of my new challenges is adjusting to a new technology platform, Zoom, which we use for work conferencing online. Zoom enables one to see others via video feed as they talk together. As we gathered online today for our meeting, one of our staff with young children got on the video feed. The children’s faces peered into the screen as they clustered around their mother, and they smiled and waved at us. Later, a child ran off and was bouncing up and down on a trampoline in the back of the room. My heart just warmed to see their delight and energy and I found myself breaking into a wide smile.

Sometimes it’s the small things that make us smile. And that child on the conference call made my day.

My mother was out for a walk the other day and came upon chalk drawings on the sidewalk written by children. Their messages lifted her spirit and she told me about their location. I was able to go and photograph them before the rain moved in. One of the messages said, “Don’t forget to smile today”, written in large, colorful block letters. I loved that message, because it is something that we may find easy to forget to do, especially in these times. The worry, anxiety, and fear build up, and we forget that there are also reasons to smile.

I believe God consoles us in special ways, and the psalmist reminds us that we can find joy in that consolation. I felt joy today, by the children He placed in my life. Their joy and messages of encouragement lifted my spirit. Take a look around you… how might God be consoling you today? Allow yourself to find joy for just today… and don’t forget to smile!

Prayer– “God of all consolation, in my most anxious times, you comfort me. Open my eyes to see your presence, so that I may see your love and joy in my life. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.”

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