The other day I was standing on the side of a busy street waiting for the traffic to clear long enough for me to open my car’s door and get in. My mind was far away as I thought about the day ahead and all the tasks I had to complete. Even though it was early in the morning I was already feeling weary and burdened with a heavy load. I am a cheerful person by nature, however on this morning; I was being dragged down by the weight of the day. As I stood there, a woman slowed her car and stopped a few yards in front of me. Then, with a long graceful sweep of her arm she graciously motioned for me to pass in front of her. As I looked at her with thanks, her face broke into a friendly grin. This was not just the polite curve of the lips given in passing, but instead, it was a broad, teeth sparkling, eye-twinkling smile. Her entire face lit up and when it did, so did my spirit. When I hopped into my car the thought crossed my mind that I had just seen Jesus in the flash of a smile.

I don’t know where this woman stood in her spiritual walk, but it occurred to me that she was demonstrating love by her simple act of kindness. Her courteousness changed my attitude and I found myself thanking God for her and her one simple deed. And isn’t that what Christ asks us to do -- to let our light shine so that all will praise our Father in heaven?

“You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.” (Matthew 5:14-16)

It is amazing what God will do through us to encourage others when we are obedient to Him. When we listen to His gentle nudging to reach out to someone else we are being the arms and hands of Christ. No matter what we are doing there is always opportunity to shine for Jesus. While shopping God may place someone in front of us who needs help getting something just out of their reach. During our lunch hour at work, a friend may need a listening ear. An overworked mother may need rest so you invite her children to play with yours. And even a welcoming response to our husband coming through the door in the evening is an opportunity to let Christ's light shine through us. In all these things we demonstrate God’s love. No matter what we are doing throughout the day, we can reflect the light of Jesus Christ in our actions…even through the flash of a smile.

“And let the beauty of the LORD our God be upon us, and establish the work of our hands for us; Yes, establish the work of our hands.” (Psalm 90:17)


  1. Joan, what an encourager you are. I love that!

    This is something I've felt strongly about and have shared with my friends. It's in those day to day choices we make everyday. Choosing to smile at someone, being patient with the checkout clerk who is new, allowing someone to go ahead of us in line. They may not seem like something spiritual but it could be just what that person needed. After all, would Jesus insist on getting that closest parking space or would He graciously allow someone else that privilege?

    The Matthew verse is one of my favorites as I live my life in front of many who are not YET believers. They cannot deny the light of Jesus lived each moment in love.

    Joan, I have to say I'm so glad you are blogging. May I encourage you along the way, my new friend?


  2. Thanks, Debbie! I'm glad to be blogging, too...and you already are encouraging me! Thank you so much. I love your added suggestions in your comment (patience with checkout clerk, allowing someone else to go first). You never know what someone is going through at a particular moment and I am confident that God uses these simple, random acts of kindness touch the hearts of those all around us. Thanks for your comment =)

  3. Oh, so true, Joan. We can be shining His light in this darkened world. We just need to be willing to go the extra step. I pray that I have always the opportunity to flash a big smile to maybe a discouraged person. Thank you for the reminder :)

    Love & peace,

  4. Greetings, Joan!

    What a beautiful blog you have! You are truly a light shining in this world.

    Thanks so much for stopping by my place and leaving such kind encouraging words about going deeper with God. It was a blessing to me!

  5. You are so precious, thanks for sharing this truth.

  6. AnonymousMay 07, 2010

    You are right! Sometimes it just takes something small like a kind act and a smile to change our whole day. Makes me want to look for opportunities to bless others in this way. xo


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