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I came out of the story yesterday and found my way to my car.  The parking lot was crowded, but as I turned the key and put the car in drive a huge smile came across my face.  It wasn’t a miraculous miracle—it wasn’t even a small miracle.  But it made my day.  I put the car in drive because the parking spot right in front of me was empty.  I found myself in a pull-through.

Pull-through parking spots probably don’t make your day.  They really are not that big of a deal.  But they are.  You see, my 6 year old flips his lid whenever we get to drive forward to leave a parking spot.  It ranks up there with playing Super Mario Galaxy 2 on the Wii, making sand castles on the beach, and burrito wraps with meat and cheese—no salsa.  Whenever he is in the car with me he is always on the look out for empty spaces on the other side of our parking spot.

Yesterday Ethan wasn’t with me.  But I got into my car and couldn’t help but smile.  And it wasn’t a small, thinking of you and then on with the rest of my day’ kind of smile.  It was a ‘change my day, refocus my efforts on the good things; begin to see all the blessings I have in my life’ kind of smile.  I didn’t smile with my mouth—it was a soul smile.  And it started because I experienced something that brings a little joy to the coolest 6 year old I know.   What makes your soul smile?

As a father with one son (and a house full of girls) I am drawn deeper into a love and appreciation for our Father and His love for the Son.  I don’t pretend to know the mind of God—but in my role as Dad I resonate with the heart of the heavenly Father.  I hurt when Ethan hurts.  I find joy in his joy.  And the simplest things can change my whole day—a vacant spot in front of my parked car for instance.  Theologians often talk about the wholeness and completeness that exists within the Trinity.  There is full communion, love, and lack of nothing within this Holy 3 in 1 and 1 in 3.  Creation pours out from this completeness and so there is nothing that we can add to that is somehow missing from the Triune God.  And yet, as a father, I know love more completely when I’m filled with joy by the very things that bring joy to my children.  “As the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, so shall your God rejoice over you.”  Isaiah 62:5

God has chosen to make His love complete in you.  And so we honor our Creator by following Jesus, being elevated by His power to become human again (we are less than human because of the fall), and spreading the joy of the Gospel.  One of the ways that we do this is by letting the joy of others inform our joy.  We then use that joy to speak about the blessed gift of love that grows in and out of that relationship and how all of it is a gift from the God who chose to love us first.  I’m excited to tell my son about how he made my soul smile.  Make the time to tell someone you love how they make your soul smile—and then say a prayer of thanks to the God who made it all happen for you.


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