The smile on your face

Happiness brings you up, and the converse is true as well. Face it, we are social "animals"; we need other people. I meet new people all the time and I can tell you from personal experience that a smile goes a long way towards establishing a friendship. This is easy to see in everyday life, but what about the Bible? Luke 15 tells the tale of a son who had gone astray and a father who was overjoyed at his return:

Luk 15:11 And he said, "There was a man who had two sons.
Luk 15:12 And the younger of them said to his father, 'Father, give me the share of property that is coming to me.' And he divided his property between them.
Luk 15:13 Not many days later, the younger son gathered all he had and took a journey into a far country, and there he squandered his property in reckless living.
Luk 15:14 And when he had spent everything, a severe famine arose in that country, and he began to be in need.
Luk 15:15 So he went and hired himself out to one of the citizens of that country, who sent him into his fields to feed pigs.
Luk 15:16 And he was longing to be fed with the pods that the pigs ate, and no one gave him anything.
Luk 15:17 "But when he came to himself, he said, 'How many of my father's hired servants have more than enough bread, but I perish here with hunger!
Luk 15:18 I will arise and go to my father, and I will say to him, "Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you.
Luk 15:19 I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Treat me as one of your hired servants."' Luk 15:20 And he arose and came to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him.
Luk 15:21 And the son said to him, 'Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.'
Luk 15:22 But the father said to his servants, 'Bring quickly the best robe, and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet.
Luk 15:23 And bring the fattened calf and kill it, and let us eat and celebrate.
Luk 15:24 For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.' And they began to celebrate. ESV
Do you think anyone smiled? Was there happiness there? Why? Aren't religious people supposed to be stuffed shirts? Whoever started that idea probably has never known the happiness that only God can bring into life. Make no mistake, this parable is about the religiously wayward returning to God. Do you think God smiles; I do, because HE is happy with all those who turn from sinful lives to ones that please HIM. And that not only affects God, but you as well. So, tomorrow, smile and watch the effect the smile on your face will have on others; who knows, they might just see God smiling through you.