Friday, January 21, 2011

God's smile

Psalms 67

1 God, mark us with grace
and blessing! Smile!
2 The whole country will see how you work,
all the godless nations see how you save.
3 God! Let people thank and enjoy you.
Let all people thank and enjoy you.
4 Let all far-flung people become happy
and shout their happiness because
You judge them fair and square,
you tend the far-flung peoples.
5 God! Let people thank and enjoy you.
Let all people thank and enjoy you.
6 Earth, display your exuberance!
You mark us with blessing, O God, our God.
7 You mark us with blessing, O God.
Earth's four corners — honor him!

This is another Psalm that gave me a big smile.  We often think of God as a judge, with a big gavel, from a black and white movie.  We see Him as a man watching for people to mess up, watching with a shrewd eye, so He can dole out His justice.  When people are having a rough time some will even wonder what sin they committed, or the individual will wonder what they did wrong to deserve this.  It's not like that.  Like we read in the last Psalm, part of being a believer is being refined like silver in fire.  He knows we need to gain strength through the hard times so we can shout all the louder in the end.  God's judgments are fair and square.  He wants us to be happy and thankful.  To see our blessings.    

One day Jesus and the disciples had a conversation while walking past a blind man,
John 9:2-7
2 And His disciples asked Him, saying, "Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?"
3 Jesus answered, "Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him.  4 I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work.  5 As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world."
6 When He had said these things, He spat on the ground and made clay with the saliva; and He anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay. 7 And He said to him, "Go, wash in the pool of Siloam" (which is translated, Sent). So he went and washed, and came back seeing.

Sometimes Christians come off as being very serious. We forget joy and compassion.  We forget God's smile.  I know He has a sense of humor, just look at the kangaroo.  What a silly animal- they hop on two feet and come with a pouch to carry their babies. How cool is that? How did He ever come up with the color hot pink?  He used it on flowers, snakes and different places.  Butterflies are so amazing.  They start out as caterpillars crawling about, become a cocoon and transform into swallowtails.  Amazing!  Sometimes I can feel His smile, like when I ask Him to show me where the good shots are to photograph.  Or when I finally get it after trying to figure out a problem.  When I simply surrender and say, "Forgive me, You're will be done."

This Psalm describes us as a happy people filled with joy, marked by blessing.  When I quit my last job, I knew I'd done the right thing, 3 hours of commuting each day and 9 hour days in the office.  My car was racking up more miles than the money I was earning to replace it.  I quit with a huge smile on my face.  It drove the bosses crazy, "Why is she smiling?"  So I'd tell them I'm a Christian.  Some of the ladies said, "I knew it!"  Which was a great encouragement, because sometimes I don't feel very Christian.  That's when I just need faith. God's smile, I can't explain it.  It comes from deep within us, and surrounds us from Heaven. 

Nehemiah 8:10
"...Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength."

If you don't feel like smiling today.  That's ok too, sometimes we're not supposed to. 


  1. Hi Karen! Thanx for following me, I'm following you back and I love what I've read so far! Yay for getting to know new friends!!

  2. Oh and I too believe that Jesus followers are loving a very joyful God, so we ought to be pretty happy ourselves, right?

  3. Yay back for new friends!! I think we should be happy too in so much as it's possible. Some days I'd like to crawl under the sheets and hide. God has blessed us so much we should be happy. Thanks for following!

    One of my favorite prayers is, "Lord deliver us from sour-faced saints." St. Teresa of Avila

  4. I wouldn't want to encourage people to be fake. When I'm down or feeling unspiritual, I find God's comfort and He restores my joy. The happiness that comes out of a smile should come from within.

  5. Yes, God looks for the good in us. (Psalm 130:3) He wants us all to smile and be happy. All we have to do to be happy is obey God; He knows what is best for us. (Isaiah 48:17, 18)

    Nice post!

  6. Joy indeed should be our "mark". Thanks for the reminder.

  7. The more I read your beautiful reflections, the more I think we have in common.:)

    I see the same humor in so many of the animals and it is often why I think god has a fantastic sense of humor as well!:)

    I am a huge Leonard Cohen fan and one of my favorite lines from him is this:

    "Jesus taken serious by many. Jesus taken joyous by a few."

    I always think if more people took Jesus joyously, well, quite honestly we Christians wouldn't have such a bad name!:)

    Have a wonderful weekend my dear friend!

  8. That was supposed to "God" with a capital G!! :)

  9. What a great group of friends! We do have a lot in common for sure. I feel the same. Have a wonderful weekend everyone!

  10. This is beautiful and also very encouraging..keep it up!

  11. Thanks Murugi! So glad to have you as a new friend.