“Oh is that for me?”
My son pulled his donut back protectively closer to his chest and shook his head no. Mentally, I noted other responses I could encourage him to use next time. (“Well, I’ve bitten off of this one already. Could I get you another one?” or “You want a donut? Sit right here and I’ll go get you one.”)
After he chuckled, the gentleman looked at me. Now, I’ve known this man for more than 20 years, so we tend to banter sometimes, and it’s all in good fun. He made an observation after asking how I was, “You are always smiling.” Well, OK, but you didn’t see me a moment ago when I asked my kids if they had been sitting on an ant mound with the way they were moving about.
“It makes me wonder what you’ve been up to,” he said.
Stuff. I’ve been busy with stuff. Reading, studying, writing my articles, laundry. I bought a new steam mop that did wonders on my kitchen floor, cleaned up in the library. I vacuumed the upstairs, the foyer and the stairs. I’ve been walking and jogging and going to a few meetings here and there. I even cooked a few meals and washed dishes.
He is not the first one to say something like this to me, either. Years ago, I was working and attending college for my bachelor’s degree. I had a mission in life; a purpose. Each day as I entered the building, I had a smile plastered on my face. I got the nickname “Smiley” because of it.
Conversely, I have had others tell me that I have a mean look on my face as I walk sometimes deep in thought. I guess I am either hot or cold with no in between, then.
Later that evening, I sat in a bible study and the speaker said something like this: “I don’t think we would have half the problems we do if we could just remember who we all are. We are children of the Most High God, Creator of the Universe; joint heirs with Jesus.”
Amen, Brother, preach it!
No matter what is going on in my life, I cannot allow circumstances to dictate my attitude or behavior. One of my refrigerator magnets says it like this: Your beliefs don’t make you a better person, your behavior does. If my behavior does not line up with what I believe, how can anyone know who I really am?
I have joy in my life because of God. I have the whole world before me and I can choose to be anywhere and do anything. I can also choose to be happy no matter my circumstances or find misery at each turn.
A little figurine I have tells me to “Bloom where you are planted.” Even if I get uprooted and moved at some point, I can bloom as I am planted there as well.
I’ll leave you with these verses: “For you have now received not a spirit of slavery to put you once more in bondage to fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption in which we cry, Abba! Father! The Spirit Himself testifies together with our own spirit, that we are children of God. And if we are children, then we are heirs also: heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ …” (Romans 8:15-16, 17)
And the even better part of all of this? “… He chose us in Christ before the foundation of the world … He foreordained us to be adopted as His own children …” (Ephesians 1:4,5)
And all this while as we jump and behave in a manner to be noticed, in essence screaming out, “PICK ME, PICK ME!” to people we meet on the streets, we have already been chosen and adopted by God.
And if He is fer me, who kin be agin me? Why would I need to frown?