Finding God In Their Smiles

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I have very much been enjoying the current teaching series at my church – Finding God (in some of the most unusual and unexpected places).

The last few weeks have challenged us as a church to look for God in places we may never have thought to look before – in the dark, in the smallness, and in the holidays – to name a few.

Being asked to be a contributing writer for the advent devotional book that has accompanied the teaching series was not only an honor, but also led me to personally think of times I have found God in different situations and places.

This past Sunday as the children of the church stood on the platform, dressed in their new Christmas sweaters and sparkly dresses, and sang the songs they had spent weeks practicing – God’s presence showed up in maybe one of the greatest ways…

It was in their smiles.

Here children of different ages and nationalities stood together and sang of joy to the world and coming to adore Christ the Lord.

And in a world that tends to be so full of darkness, their smiles and their joy lit up our church.

Each Sunday as I spend the majority of my day in the Kid’s Life building I watch as kids play together, they laugh, they sing and they sit, intrigued, as they learn more about Jesus.

Our building with the crazy carpet and bright colored paint is always loud, and fun, and full.

Sometimes I’m amazed as I watch the kids run and play, or wildly dance around and shout out the words to one of our favorite worship songs – when I know how life away from the church may not offer them much to smile about.

I’ve cried many times when the inability to fix a child’s situation has left me feeling hopeless.

Sometimes simply being there on a Sunday morning, offering a hug and asking about their week doesn’t seem like enough.

But time and time again, I am encouraged by the joy they bring with them.

In their smiles, I see God at work. I see His light. And it’s an incredible reminder that He is always with them.

I want to be more like these kids.

When life around me isn’t going how I may have planned, when there seems to be such darkness – may I find reasons to sing, and dance, and smile.

And there I’ll find Him.