On my walk this morning a man stopped me to ask for money. His opening gambit was, “Do you go to church? You look like you go to church.”
I didn’t have any money with me, but as I walked away, I was bemused by his comment. Should I be flattered, gratified or offended? What exactly does a person who goes to church look like? I’m past middle-age and have gray hair. Does this fellow think all older women go to church? I only wish that were true! It was still early, so I was pretty clean. Maybe this guy remembered that old saw, “Cleanliness is next to Godliness.” Then, too, I was walking along at a pretty fair pace, so was it my apparent good health he was remarking about? I think I read a report somewhere saying regular church-goers are healthier than the general population.
As I walked, I racked my brain. I think of myself as pretty ordinary-looking, so what was it? Passing another fellow walker and exchanging smiles and greetings, it occurred to me that I always smile at the people I meet along the way. Maybe that was what the man noticed.
I will never know, for certain, how this man knew I was a church-goer, (or if this was his way of trying to guilt me into a donation), but how marvelous it would be if all the world identified Christians by their cheerful smiles.
In Sunday School we used to sing, “Happiness is to Know the Savior”, and it still is.
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