Full Circle Smile

Galatians 6:7-10, Mathew 7:12, 2, John 1:6, Ecclesiastes 11:1

"A smile is a curve that sets everything straight." Phyllis Diller

My first real job was working as a cashier or "checker" as we called it then. It was a small market and hard work, but it paid well. Even my youthful eighteen-year-old legs had begun showing signs of varicose veins from long hours of standing on a concrete floor. The constant bending over to lift groceries from the customer's basket to the counter was beginning to wear on my young back as well. Yet, despite all the many reasons for calling it "work", I enjoyed my job and greeted every customer with a cheerful smile. To me it was an opportunity to meet and greet many new friends and indeed that is how I met the man I married. That of course, is a whole other story. Naturally, not everyone who came through my checkout line was pleasant and many were downright difficult. However, some humorous and encouraging stories from those days still make me smile today.

When I became engaged to that extra special customer, my natural carbonated personality seemed to be magnified beyond containment. Apparently some of my customers noticed as I called out prices and punched the old register keys with a double dose of cheer. However, reality's harsh hand caught me off duty one day and slapped the smile right off my face. It was my day off and I was shopping for my wedding-night negligee. Finding a pretty nightgown that would make my boyish figure look sexy was a task that took its toll on my spirits. I had decided that this was the last boutique I would try, when a familiar woman entered the same shop. Although by now I knew many customers by name, she was only vaguely familiar. In recognition of me as "her checker", she spoke first. Surprised to see that I wasn't my usual cheerful self, she began telling me how I had so often helped her get through difficult day. "Sometimes," she said, "I would think of a reason to go grocery shopping just so I could see your smiling face."

My figure didn't miraculously change at that moment, but I'm sure the countenance on my face returned to its former glow. The smile I had given her now reflected back on me brighter than any mirror might show. My own smile had come back full circle. We never know how our attitude may affect someone else, but the verse: "Cast your bread upon the waters for you will find it in many days," sure came alive to me that day.


When the sun begins to shine in Troubadour,

Life begins again.

Birds begin to sing outside your door.

And love comes shining in

Truth may not find a way,

So many things to coax and sway.

Our hearts will only love,

When we give place to

The Light from above.

And surrender all that we adore,

Then we become troubadours.

Iris Carignan

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Nice!! I have many such stories from my days as a young waitress!! During those times I learned many life lessons as I dealt with pleasant and not so pleasant customers. Let Jesus shine through!!!
2015-03-27, Linda><>

Your story brought back a memory from long ago. I was in a girl's private high school and as a new freshman was assigned a "big sister" to guide me through the new experience. When our time together came to a close, she said to me: "Don't ever lose that beautiful smile!" I was stunned because I felt so serious inside. She made me aware that I had a "gift," a small one, that could be given freely to others if only I made it a practice. That thought and practice has never left me, all these many decades later.
2015-04-03, Martha K.

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