“For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face:
now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.”
1 Corinthians 13:12
Friendly faces show hospitality. All we have to do is smile. Smiles show kindness and warmth that welcomes others into our spaces and conversations. We all have access to one and they’re portable. Sincere smiles can melt cold hearts or comfort lonely souls. Most establishments welcome friendly faces. They work well in homes, churches, workplaces, and communities. Truth is, the world could use more friendly faces—masks or no masks.
When I look at my face in the mirror, I wonder, “What do others see?” Do they see sincere compassion and approval? Do they find friendly hospitality or hostility? Do they feel love and support? Do they see eyes of grace the way God looks at me?
“For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer,
he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass:
For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way,
and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was.” James 1:23-24
I don’t want to be two-faced and known as someone who says one thing and does another. There’s a distinct difference between putting on a friendly face and putting on a front. God and most people see through faux friendliness.
Scripture says in 1 Corinthians 13:12 that one day we’ll see ourselves as clearly as God sees us. We won’t be able to hide behind forced or fake smiles. Our friendly-looking selfies may fool our “friends” but God knows our heart. Whether we’re connecting through Facebook, Facetime, or Face-to-Face, others can tell when we’re acting friendly instead of actually being friendly.
Let’s face it, not all Facebook “followers” are friends. If they were, less people would suffer from rejection and loneliness. Sadly, Facebook gives us a false sense of inclusiveness with its tribes of faux friends. An emoji heart or thumbs-up for a clever post, pic, or comment doesn’t indicate a meaningful relationship. It’s like greeting someone with, “Hey, How ya doing?” It’s done in passing and means little. Truthfully, few people care about how we’re doing. Following someone’s page doesn’t mean we’re on the same page—socially, spiritually or otherwise.
Facetime happens in real time and sometimes gets too real. Unscheduled video calls feel like someone dropping by unannounced. You might get caught without make up, wearing pajamas or in the middle of wrangling dust bunnies. In those settings, I pretty much decline Facetime unless it’s my sister or a super close friend. The point is real friends see the real us and still like us. Amazing!
Real friendships take more than Gifs, Emojis, and “LOL” replies. They require face-to-face time and authentic friendliness. The real kind, that drives us to share happy memories and suffer through hard moments together.
Putting on a front is harder than putting on a sincere friendly face. Let’s get real, put our best face forward and let others see Christ in us.
“Having many things to write unto you, I would not write with paper and ink:
but I trust to come unto you, and speak face to face, that our joy may be full.”
2 John 1:12
Bring It Home
Let’s practice putting on a friendly face today! Smile and look in the mirror…
Then, post “Smile!” in the comment section and let us see it.
Praying for you as we grow together,