The Mask Comes Off

Walked into church this morning and was greeted with the new CDC guidance: The mask can come off if you are vaccinated. In addition, there were no pews roped off. My little church in Northeast Pennsylvania was open for business once again. Normal business. Well, almost normal. You couldn’t sing. What’s up with that?

The mask has represented so much during the past year. Taken literally, it’s protection for you and the people around you to cut down on spreading airborne particles of the virus. To others, it represented just another move by the government to take away your independent liberties. I hated the mask but I wore it because I know that it protects me and others. What I really hated was only being able to look into other people’s eyes. I had to learn to smile with my eyes.

It was good to see faces again. To see smiles all around me. To hear people’s voices not muffled by the mask but clear voices. To take in whole faces.

As I wrote in a previous post, yes, Jesus would have worn a mask. He would have worn it because He would want to protect others, before Himself. Because the civil authorities required Him to wear a mask. But Jesus would have missed seeing whole faces. To seeing smiles. To hearing clear voices.

I hope in this crazy, upside-down world of ours we can start returning to “normal”—whatever “normal” is. But most of all, I hope we can smile. And see smiles. They have been covered for too long. It’s time for smiles to come out like flowers in spring. Let’s all try to spread some smiles.

Have a GREAT week ahead. And smile!!!

Best Super Bowl Commercial Ever!!!

What!!! I’m not trying to impart some wisdom or talking religious mumbo-jumbo? Best Super Bowl commercial ever? What’s that about? Well, here goes…

In my book, the best Super Bowl commercial is the “Coke and a smile” commercial with Pittsburgh Steelers great Mean Joe Greene and the “kid”—Tommy Okon. As in my little brother Tommy Okon. I’ve seen the commercial over 1,000 times (pretty accurate) and it still gives me goosebumps. Maybe they don’t make like that anymore, but there is something special about that commercial.

If you’re too young to know the commercial, pull it up on YouTube here. It’s worth a minute. In this day and age of darkness, a little kindness does a lot to shed some light on the darkness.

Love my brother and always so proud of him!

Have a GREAT day, enjoy the Super Bowl (and the commercials), and have a smile!

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A Birthday Wish

I’m allowed a wish on my birthday (today, October 3rd). It’s that everyone reading this will simply smile today in hopes of passing that smile along to at least two other people. A smile can be infectious. It’s a simple signal from the heart that you are happy. Passing that along to someone you don’t know, especially with a “Have a GREAT day!” can turn a person’s bad day into a good day. I could wish for more love in the world—as God commands us to love—but I’ll take a smile for my birthday.

That’s it. No lectures or verses about how God commands us to do one simple thing—LOVE! I’m just wishing that all who read this simply smile today and pass it along to others. God is smiling at you. Return that smile to his other children.

Thanks and have a GREAT day!!!