It’s a valid question. One we should all contemplate. I have always answered that question with I want to know and feel the smile of God on my life. Sounds good, doesn’t it? Flows nicely off the lips. But what does that mean? What would that look like in my life?
To figure that out I thought of the times I knew for certain God smiled on my life. I figured it would have something to do with writing since that has been both my vocation and avocation for as long as I can remember. Remarkably, though, it is not directly related. The times I knew for certain God smiled on me were when people were helped even in just some small way.
The help didn’t have to be life-changing. For years I taught adult Sunday School. Many adult class members, fellow strugglers along life’s path, told me that the classes meant something to them, made an impact on their life in some way. One woman made a decision to go back to school and pursue a career directly because of the things she discovered in the class. Tears were shed as eyes were opened to truth. And God smiled.
Many times sitting in a meeting, I am prompted to give financially to a cause. Years ago it was $10 because that is all I had. I don’t really write many checks any more because I give to most of my causes through my account online. I love to type in the numbers because I know God rejoices when I do. It’s like he’s saying, “She gets it, she finally gets it! It’s about giving back what she's given. It’s about holding all things loosely.” And God smiled.
Last week I was privileged to meet an amazing young lady who has chosen to follow God in a ministry of prayer and intercession. At age 19, without the support of her parents, it is a scary journey. God told me to give her everything in my wallet. Usually that would be about 10 cents but because I had made several out of town trips, I had gotten cash several times. I have no idea how much was there. All I know is it was what God said to give so, it was enough. And God smiled.
In 2003, God started me on a journey towards having weight reduction surgery. It was a scary proposition, but one he confirmed to me over and over again. The main confirmation came during a church service where our pastor at the time spoke about how God can break the chains that bind us. It was a turning point service, an epiphany, really. I wept and told him I would do whatever he required of me and I did. And God smiled.
Scripture speaks to me over and over and over again. One that has been motivational for me is Isaiah 30:21. It basically says if you’re walking along you will hear a voice behind you saying no this is the way whenever you turn to the right or to the left. I discovered that verse reading through the Bible one year. Imagine how amazed I was to find out that as I shared it, others knew about it as well. To me it says it’s important to keep walking because it’s in taking the steps that God can direct me and let me know if I’m veering off the path. So, I decided the importance of embarking on a life of walking out in faith, not knowing for sure. And God smiled.
In the last few months I have been privilege to begin life coaching some amazing women. Amazing because they all have such awesome hunger for doing what God wants of their life. As I have questioned them, listened to them, cried with them, I have learned something valuable. We don’t have to do anything to receive God’s love. He already loves us just as we are. The video I posted below says it so much better than I. But it so true and that truth is permeating my hardened shell. As it does, it is contagious and spreads to those I'm talking with, sharing with, loving with. Lately, as I have sat with a woman, spent time with her helping her discover purpose, talked with her, heard her heart I could just see God sitting in his heavenly recliner, sipping a lemonade, watching the movie that is us playing out before him. You know what he did, right? And God smiled.
That’s what I want. I want more of that.