Are you pleasant to be around?
Are you nice to come home to? Are you nice to work with? Do people like being around you?
Part of the answer for each of us is connected to how well we live out Proverbs 15:30:
The light of the eyes rejoices the heart, and good news refreshes the bones. ESV
A cheerful look brings joy to the heart; good news makes for good health. NLT
As a mom, this verse challenges me. Parenting requires that we lay down the rules of the home, discipline children, clean and cook when we don’t feel like it, help with homework when doing homework is complicated, and come home after a long day’s work legitimately needing some down time.
As a wife, this verse challenges me. Marriage requires that we lay down our lives to honor another on a daily basis, to bear with each other and keep doing so for decades. There are seasons of varying difficulty, but those season variations don’t allow for commitment variations.
Does God expect us to smile every minute?
Years ago, I determined the answer is no. Jesus didn’t smile every minute, for example. He scolded, wept, taught sobering truths and was bone tired at times. But I also realized it is possible to live an entire day without smiling. I can also live an entire day without saying something kind, even if I never say something mean.
So I set up some guidelines about smiles.
I can’t smile every minute, but I aim to make sure I smile at certain key times of the day by routine. I really work at. 1) The first time I see each family member each day, 2) As each person leaves my home, 3) As each person enters the home, 4) The last time I see each family member before they go to bed.
Doing so will help ensure that all days start off on a cheerful footing, all leave knowing they are loved, all return feeling welcomed, and all go to bed feeling loved. I can’t predict what will happen in between, but though I have failed many times at this, I have aimed to practice Proverbs 15:30 in this way for quite some time.
And I set up a guideline about words.
What I have taught my kids and what I try to live by is, “If you think a positive thought, say it.” In this day and age I can also choose to pause and text it.
As schedules relax this summer, let’s make sure we are a pleasant person to be around by making sure Proverbs 15:30 is alive and well in our homes and relationships.
Picture Explanation: Someone turned 17 and we had a birthday dinner. I love him.
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