Smile Pretty

I think 'cheerfulness' is an underrated characteristic. Women want to be beautiful, intelligent, successful, sassy, et cetera, et cetera. But I rarely hear 'cheerful' at the top of the list. And we always seem to have something in our lives to complain about. When people ask how we are, we can often respond with negativity. "I'm not feeling well."

"I lost my job."

"I'm so annoyed with so-and-so."

"I'm so broke."

"I'm just too busy."

There's always something to gripe about and blame our bad moods on. Now, I don't want to trivialize the things we go through in life. I just want to throw it out there that at times, we get too caught up in our own pity parties. We allow our negativity to drain the energy of those around us. Be honest with yourself. Are there days when conversations seem to become all about you and your frustrations? Are there days when you just don't feel like smiling and being cheerful at all?

Proverbs 17:22 "A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a broken spirit saps a person's strength."

Recently, I spent the night in the ICU with my sister so she wouldn't be alone when she awoke throughout the night. Before I went to the hospital, my husband said, "Be happy in the room so she stays calm." With all the tubes and machines, it wasn't an easy sight to see. I felt the furthest thing from happy. I was frustrated, worried, and sad at what was happening.  But my husband's words stuck in my head. I knew that the best way I could help the environment was to put my sad face aside and be as cheerful as possible. Which meant smiling big every single time she woke up, making jokes about everything I could, and singing "Happy Birthday" to her in my most horrible voice.

The point is, I didn't feel cheerful. We often don't. But one way to make the world a better place is to simply be cheerful in your interactions with others. Cheerfulness is one trait I've been trying to cultivate within the last couple of years. Everyone has their negative stuff going on, but we really can pour into a person's life just by being cheerful. More often than not, let's show off our smiles and be a light. Let's walk into a room and bring positivity!

Prayer: God, help us to walk with Your joy in our hearts. Even when our troubles drain us, let us bring positivity and cheerfulness into the lives around us. Let us be lights! Amen.