Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice.
GO SLOW. SMILE. If you were here for Youth Sunday and saw and heard and experienced what a wonderful job our youth did in leading worship, you were probably sitting in the congregation and couldn't see the sign on the pulpit. It was a reminder for each speaker to see so that they would look and sound their best. Each of them was trying to lead worship, rather than perform. We talked about how doing our best, speaking slowly and clearly, and looking happy to share good news would help to lead well. We discussed how speaking poorly or quickly and looking sad would be distracting and shift the focus away from God and toward us. I was immensely proud of how well they did, how seriously they took their preparation and their task.
As I was cleaning up Monday morning in the chapel, I saw the sign. And although it was meant for the youth on Sunday morning, it is such a good reminder for all of us in our daily Christian life. The ability to intentionally slow down in a world that is so fast, to be still and spend time with God, to worship weekly and pray daily and notice those in need and respond... that is one of our greatest callings as believers. It's one of the hardest things we do, and one of the most important as a witness to others.
And then... to smile. We can tell people all day about the good news of the Gospel. We can even live in such a way that shows we believe it. But when we do it in such a way that no joy is evident, it simply isn't believable. God asks us to do all things to his glory, to do all things in love, but Paul reminds us that if we do not rejoice, no one will believe us. No one will follow us. No one will be reached or changed or found or saved. It is vital to our walk as believers to be able to smile, especially when sharing good news.
I hope that as you go through this week, you can be inspired by our youth. I hope you will slow down. I hope you will smile. And I hope in your still moments, you will find time to rejoice in the Lord, and that you will share that smile with others, and give them reasons to smile with you.
Prayer for Today
Lord, help me to slow down and be still. Help to rejoice and to smile. And help me to seek to be someone whose life is a witness to the grace I've been shown when people see me. Amen.