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Priceless

There used to be a commercial for MasterCard few years back. It is called, “Priceless.” It would show few things in life and what their costs were, then conclude with this: “The smile in your …… face – priceless. There are something that money cannot buy; but for everything else, there is MasterCard.” Recently I had such an experience. No, not MasterCard experience, but a “priceless” experience.

There is a believer in our church; she is a widow and lives with her youngest daughter. They live in abject poverty, so poor that they would attend only Sunday services, not any other prayer meetings. Because for both of them to come to the church, it would cost them (which would be less 50 cents) and they can’t afford to even spare that. Entire week, they have to work so they can have enough money to attend the Sunday services. Because of their poverty, most of the time you see them, there would be sadness in their faces, though they will be smiling all the time.

They became very close to us during this last year, during my sickness. The daughter treated me like an elder brother and whenever they come to the church, they would help my wife by doing all the household works and in taking care of me, especially when I was very sick.

This March, when I was again under severe trauma, she brought me breakfast as I was under severe pain and was unable to move. I could sense that she was more sad that day than usual. When I enquired her, she was initially reluctant to tell me anything, as I was already suffering from intense pain; but then with tears, she opened up.

Her sister, who eloped with someone, wanted to reconcile with her family for the last one year. However, her mom was not ready for reconciliation; not because she had not forgiven her. But because, as per Indian custom, when the girl comes home for the first time after her marriage, especially with a child, they have to provide her with some jewels, snacks and dresses. Since they did not have any money, for last one year, her mother has been desisting the reconciliation process. When they tried to borrow some money from their relatives, they were abused and humiliated for following a “foreign” God, and were thrown out. They were advised to wait for the Lord to give them enough provisions before inviting their eloped daughter back to home – and they had been waiting for the last one year. Now, her sister’s daughter is 3 years old and she really wants to meet her grandmother before going to school. So, they were very upset about all these.

I told her to invite her sister to come home; the LORD would provide whatever they need. I asked her to take the step in simple faith.

They did. Like simple children, they took my word and the LORD did provide with more money than they could have borrowed from their relatives. The daughter who eloped, came to the church, sought our forgiveness for what she did and has been visiting her mother frequently, along with her daughter.

Last Saturday (August 5th, 2017), as I was getting ready to go upstairs, I heard the gate opening and turned to see who was coming. The youngest daughter was coming in, with such a joyful smile in her face, along with her mom and sister. I have never seen such a smile in her face and it was priceless. There was a spring in her walk and she was genuinely happy.

What was surprising me the most was how satisfied I have been since that smile. That priceless smile has been, truly, priceless for me. There is a sense of serenity in my heart, ever since I saw her smile.

Then I remembered something I have read in the Bible about our LORD. Zephaniah 3:17 says thus: The Lord your God in your midst, The Mighty One, will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing. (NKJV)

If a true smile in the face of a sister I know only for a year can bring so much joy into my heart, then how glad our Mighty God will be, to see a smile of joy in our faces; HE carried us as we were being formed in the wombs of our mothers; when we were born, His tender hands lifted us up. Ever since He has been a loving Father, Who is taking care of us.

In this world filled with various tribulations and afflictions, there are times when we can’t even force a smile in our faces. So, when His Word is fulfilled in our life, when His promises come true, when we taste His blessings, that smile in our face – brings so much joy to our Father’s heart.

In all the troubles we are facing, He quiets us with His love, through His Son Jesus Christ; and when He sees that joyfulness in our hearts, that genuine smile in our faces, He rejoices over us with singing. Oh, what a great loving God we worship! What a loving Father we have in Heaven! What a wonderful Savior we have in our Lord Jesus Christ! How blessed are we!

Zephaniah 3_17