I’ve read a few Facebook posts about people you meet who smile slightly with their mouths, but the smile never reaches their eyes.  This has been deemed something akin to an “unsmile,” if there could be such a word.  People have judged others as insincere smilers.

It made me think back to my smile.  I have a tremendously small mouth.  That might come as a huge surprise to many who think I have a big mouth!  My mouth is so small that my teeth didn’t fit.  I had a terrible overbite and crooked teeth making me very ashamed.

Back on the farm we didn’t have dentist visits.  Well, there was the time I had an abscessed tooth and I was taken to Fincastle to who I referred to as the “one-eyed dentist” (he only had one eye).  He finally removed the tooth, but as I recall, drilled my tongue rather unpleasantly too.  After I was grown and married and working, I searched for an orthodontist.  Being classified as beyond hope and help, it was the third orthodontist who took me on as a personal favor to my dentist and removed seven more teeth and eventually gave me a smile.

The point I want to make is that as a young teen, I used to sit for hours in front of a mirror practicing looking pleasant and smiling without showing any teeth.  I practiced talking without showing any teeth.  I got it down to an art.  Looking sad was my art, but no teeth showed!

Maybe sometimes we judge people with no idea what they’ve been through and what has chiseled their features and what has made them sad and what makes their eyes not smile.  I still struggle from past hurts and past exercises in training myself NOT to smile so much so that for many years peers viewed me as lofty, unapproachable, and “stuck on myself.”  Perhaps they still do.  Oh my!  If they only knew.

We are all buildings in progress.  We are the temple of the Holy Spirit.  We are all in various degrees of being torn down and being built up and being restored.  Let’s judge from a heart full of love and forgiveness.  Let’s live to our best I Corinthians 13 and look at people through the eyes of love.

Just because I love you, I want to share a picture that I hope you enjoy.  This is the remainder of “Sister’s” family.  I just call him Boy.

up close with my boy