August 2003

Let A Smile Be Your Umbrella

The words of a song began to filter through my musings. Whenever skies are gray, don’t you worry or fret, a smile will bring the sunshine…so; let a smile be your umbrella, on a rainy, rainy day . . .. Why should I smile when I felt so miserable?

However, it was on a gray day in January of 1968 that God changed my countenance from a frown to a smile. He filled me with His joy, bathed me in His love, and brought a genuine smile to my face that remains even on rainy, rainy days – through tests, trials and temptations.

My deliverance from depression was instantaneous. Two or three weeks later our eight-year-old came bouncing in from school asking, “Mom, what has happened to you? You are smiling all the time now.” God had turned my mourning into dancing, and I had put off the sackcloth that I had worn for years.

Deliverance is an opportunity for a new beginning. I began to exchange old thought patterns for new, and to help reinforce my deliverance I began to write scriptural prayers, praying them aloud every day. “This is the day the Lord has made. I rejoice and I am glad in it! My Lord, my God, I rejoice in you always, and again I say, I rejoice. I delight myself in you, and I am happy because you are my Lord! I have obtained joy and gladness; sorrow and sighing have taken flight; I have the victory. Thank you for giving me a spirit of rejoicing, joy and laughter!” Always the hovering darkness would flee. (The entire prayer, To Rejoice in the Lord, is in Prayers That Avail Much, Volume 1 and the Commemorative Edition.)

Do you really believe that God is God, and what He does for others He will do for you? Your countenance speaks volumes. Several years ago, my family and I were visiting my parents. We along with other family members attended church where my father, Rev. A. H. “Buck” Griffin, served as pastor. The choir sang in harmony, “It is joy unspeakable and full of glory. Oh, the half has never yet been told.”

That afternoon while we were sitting at the lunch table talking and laughing, my brother said, “The choir members need to notify their faces of the joy they sang about today.” They loved the Lord and were intense in their praises, and I understood.

Even though smiling had become natural, I was always very intense in my praise and worship, never thinking about my facial expression. But this changed when I attended a Christian concert where it seemed the ceiling above my head disappeared and I saw Jesus. He was smiling at me! On impulse I smiled back, the muscles in my back, neck and face relaxed, and my frown automatically disappeared.

Jesus said without reproach, “My people screw up their faces, thinking that they are proving their sincerity. They try so hard to worship me in spirit and truth, but are too uptight to hear my laughter. I rejoice over you with singing – with a joyful countenance. I am here to show you the path of life. In my presence is fullness of joy; at my right hand are pleasures forevermore.”

The Father is your Exceeding Great Joy; He is the health of your countenance! Fellowship with Him and smiling will be spontaneous, natural and genuine. Your happy heart is a good medicine and your cheerful mind works healing. The light in your eyes will rejoice the hearts of others…your countenance will radiate the joy of the Lord. Your smile has the power to drive away oppression. It will be your umbrella – your protection from self-pity and remorse.

It has been said that smiling costs nothing, but creates much good. It enriches those who receive it without impoverishing those who give it away. It happens in a flash but the memory of it can last forever. No one is so rich that he can get along without it. No one is too poor to feel rich when receiving it. It creates happiness in the home, fosters good will in business, and is the countersign of friends. It is rest to the weary, daylight to the discouraged, sunshine to the sad, and nature’s best antidote for trouble. Yet it cannot be bought, begged, borrowed, or stolen for it is something of no earthly good to anybody until it is given away willingly.

Have you lost your joy? Have you lost your smile? God gave one of our intercessors, Pastor Lane Holland, this message of hope.

What Happened To The SmilesDrop the “S” and it leaves miles
The miles of trials and tests caused the unnatural burdens to accumulate.

Drop the “M” and you see an “I”
That small word signifies a lot. “I” helped the smile disappear when I Stopped trusting, believing and worshipping God.

But the “I” can put it back!
“I” can decide to remember the mercy, goodness and favor of the Lord.
Then the “I” will surrender to the “L”, “L” will bring us back to the Covenant of unconditional love. Love causes us to lift our eyes Heavenward and open our mouths and utter praises without measure unto God.

Then there is the “E” to consider.
To get the smile back empty your heart of its clutter and
enjoy the presence of the Holy Spirit.

Finally the last “S”
Brings you back to satisfaction in your walk with God.
You learned and know the value of being content in every situation

It’s a simple thought but it brings a great reward. So, start to smile again and remember

Delight thyself (smile) also in the Lord And He shall give thee the desires of thy heart.
Psalm 37:4

(Received July 20, 2003 at the Seed of Faith Church, Lee’s Summit, Missouri by Lane M. Holland)

Germaine Copeland
Your Prayer Partner

Copyright © Germaine Copeland 2003

Germaine Copeland is the author of the best selling book series, Prayers That Avail Much. She has written scriptural prayers for the family. Read your Bible, pray and attend church where you can soak up the love and faith of God. You will receive emotional healing, experience spiritual growth and become more intimately acquainted with your Heavenly Father, and your relationships will grow stronger.

Continue to pray the Prayers of Commitment from Germaine’s Prayers That Avail Much Commemorative Edition and ask to receive Jesus as Savior and Lord.