In his book, Peace Is Every Step, Thich Nhat Hanh writes, “If a child smiles, if an adult smiles, that is very important. If in our daily lives we can smile, if we can be peaceful and happy, not only we, but everyone will profit from it… You know a smile can relax hundreds of muscles in your face… (Even) a tiny bud of a smile on our lips nourishes awareness and calms us miraculously. It returns us to the peace we thought we had lost.”
Hanh encourages us to remember to smile when we first wake up in the morning – even to hang a reminder – such as a brand, a leaf, a painting or some inspiring words near our beds. What great advice! What a great way to start the day.
In the Bible, in the book of Proverbs we read, “A cheerful heart has a continual feast.” Another Proverb reminds us, “A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a downcast spirit dries up the bones.”
Let us pray: Loving God, even when we are down and out, even when we are hurting or near despair, give us eyes to see the good and beauty all around us. Give us hearts that are able to rejoice, and lips that are quick to smile. We ask in the name of the One who came that we might have life, and have it to its fullest. Amen.