In this season of celebrating Easter, I am lost in thought about my faith. I want to share a story about a smile… how a simple smile can reveal what is in our hearts. And, to use the gifts you are given and not to compare yourself to others. Not to consider some gifts better than others – after all a gift is a gift. Sometimes we are the receiver of gifts and sometimes we are the giver of gifts. I have been on both sides – both sides produce great joy. I want to share a story about my faith.
Sometime in 2012 or 2013 I started volunteering at Gilroy Compassion Center. It is a day center for the homeless and those in need. The mission is to provide services for homeless residents of South Santa Clara County, CA, in a manner that is safe, respectful, responsible, and community-based. I started serving by greeting clients. It didn’t take long for it to become not just a place to volunteer, but a place to develop relationships with the clients. You get a different perspective when you know people personally versus making a judgment on a group of people. I would open the door in the morning, welcoming clients in with a smile and a hug. I did my best to remember their names. I feel like we all want someone to know our name. A line would form for the clients to sign in. After signing in, there were breakfast items to eat, a place to sit and rest and to get connected to services. Then I would help with those clients that needed a change of clothes and hygiene supplies. The following story speaks to never underestimating what God-given gifts you have to serve.
Posted on Facebook: February 4, 2013 – 11:08am
If all I have to give is a smile, then I pray that will serve God.
Posted on Facebook: February 8, 2013 – 9:22am
Earlier this week I posted: “If all I have to give is a smile, then I pray that will serve God.” What prompted me to post this was – when I serve at the Compassion Center, a lot of the clients will compliment me on my smile. They thank me for what I do. I REALLY appreciate those comments – but really all I do is welcome them in, show them where the food is, offer them clothes, or hygiene items. I often don’t feel like I am helping in a significant way. And, so I thought – If all I have to give is a smile, then I pray that will serve God.
This morning I served at the Compassion Center – just like every Friday morning. While there, a woman taps me on my shoulder and asks me where I go to church. We had never met or even exchanged names. Veronica proceeded to ask me to pray for her. She shared her most private information with me. We had never met. At the end of the conversation I asked, “Out of curiousness how did you know I go to church?” She looked at me and said, “I could see it in your face”.
God does use smiles!
I share this story with you to encourage you to never underestimate what you are capable of! When Jan McCallum was gathering people for what would become pixels2Pages, in the early stages of our meetings, I called Jan and said, I don’t think I have anything to offer this group. They are all so talented. She didn’t let me quit. I am so grateful for that. We all have something to contribute. I think that is what makes the pixels2Pages team so strong and the community strong, we all have such different talents and unique ways to apply the talents. And I think p2P and the community can change the world. One smile at a time, one photo a time, one story a time. I say keep the faith and keep doing what is loving. Give of yourself and you won’t make a wrong turn.
Sometimes all it takes is a smile.
Here is an Easter gift from me to you – the Easter Cross Blueprint. Click on the download button to get both 12×12 and 11×8.5 blueprints.