For centuries, people have struggled to recognize the “voice” of God.
We all have either heard of someone or ourselves have been “called” by God. However, no one can actually articulate the “voice” of God.
I would offer this: Just because you cannot understand someone, does that mean he or she does not exist? While we cannot understand the bird’s song, does that mean birds do not exist? What about worms? They have no voice, and yet we cannot claim they do not exist. My point is that we need to back away from the literalness of the word “voice” and embrace an alternate definition of the word “voice.” I would suggest that “voice” be understand as way of communicating — with or without words or sound.
With that understanding, I want to offer how each day God might speak to us. When we smile, it is a reflection of our mood or state of mind. Generally, this happens when we are experiencing joy or happiness. Those feelings are part of what God has gifted. Therefore, when we smile, it is also a reflection that God lives inside of us.
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Try this: When you see someone, smile. I don’t mean a forced smile, but a real smile. I think you will find that most people will return that smile with one of their own. Another way of looking at it is that it is yet another way that we can pass the peace of Christ to one another.
Do not underestimate the power of a smile. When you smile at someone, it may have been the only thing that went right for him or her. Your smile might convince someone that he or she really is of worth and now has decided not to take his or her life. A smile is a powerful affirmation that is underutilized.
The world’s problems can start to be addressed by a smile. Just imagine our world leaders gathered around a table — smiling. It just might set the tone for the conversation to follow. I realize that this is an oversimplification of a very complex issue. However, let’s not wait for our world leaders. Let’s begin with you and me.
Rev. Jerry Amiri, senior pastor
Salem UCC, Alhambra