In 1929 Louis Armstrong recorded the song, “When You’re Smiling”. Recently I had the pleasure of listening to this song on CD and the words got me thinking about the benefits of a smile.
Physiologically speaking, our bodies are wired with an emotional response system. When the body is stimulated by pleasant external forces, like scent, sound or visual images, the emotions are evoked. These stimulate a positive physical expression, which is revealed on our face as visible evidence of gratification.
For some of us the smile is more frequent; perhaps we have strong smiling genes. I actually come from a family of “smilers”. My grandmother, mother, and sister smile more than most people. You can find us smiling in a crowd, in the car, in the line in the grocery store, in church or at the gym.
I thought frequent smiling was normal until I became an adult and noticed that people were commenting on the fact that I smiled a lot, even strangers. So, I started to pay attention and sure enough, I was often wearing one, but when I looked around most others were not.
Since pleasant conditions provoke smiles, you might wonder if I live in the real world. I do, and I am grieved like you by what I see. But I believe that God has made it possible for us to choose the focus of our conscious moments. We can look for the good, trust in His mercy, and count our numerous blessings. Even in this mad, mad world we can find reason to smile.
Another beautiful thing about a smile is the fact that we can have a constructive impact on others without imposing on their private space. The smile travels; it is persuasive, and will provoke response from people simply by observation. It is impossible to face one and ignore it.
You have probably noticed that when you smile at others they either smile back in return, or they force themselves to look away. In each case you have challenged another individual with a positive moment.
I believe that God made the smile for sharing; it is available at no cost, it crosses all cultural barriers, is safe for all ages, and is quite easy to use. Share your beautiful God-given expression today!
Job 29:24 MSG When I smiled at them, they could hardly believe it; their faces lit up, their troubles took wing!
Orig Posted by Donna M Dougherty at 10/25/2008 12:29 PM