I love being around cheerful people. People who smile and seem to enjoy their day. People who can enjoy the rain as well as the hot sun, and find the good in both.
I can remember the big deal over entering sixth grade. It was the first time that I would get to “change” classes, having different teachers for different subjects. I was so excited about this “right of passage”. Up until that year, you would always receive a letter in early August informing you of who your teacher would be for the upcoming year and that was it. No matter what you had heard about that particular teacher, good/bad, strict/lenient, that was your teacher.
I learned a ton in sixth grade. The one thing I learned for sure is that I liked a teacher based on how they “embraced” the day. I had six different teachers that year. I had three who really seemed to love their job, be excited when we walked into the class, had a smile on their face (most of the time) and were enthusiastic about whatever the day held. I actually found myself loving them…looking forward to their class and wanting to do well to make them even happier or at least to contribute to their “cheerfulness!”
There was one class….that I dreaded….this particular teacher never smiled….she never looked up from her desk to greet us…and if she did, it was a sour look and you got the feeling she didn’t want to be there. Most of her students didn’t feel she liked them…and she was labeled……..It was a struggle and a battle to go to that class and want to do well. Her attitude about life and the day permeated everyone. I had her class in between my two favorite classes which was how I got through each day!
Now that I am an adult, I have really identified with our kids when they have had someone leading them who was negative and sour. It has been easy for me to point them to scripture about “cheerfulness”. For example:
Proverbs 15:15, “All the days of the oppressed are wretched, but the cheerful heart has a continual feast.”
Proverbs 15:30, “A cheerful look brings joy to the heart…..”
Proverbs11:25,”….he who refreshes others will himself be refreshed.”
Proverbs 17:22, “A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.”
I realize the only thing you can do about people who have a sour attitude is limit your time around them, PRAY for them, and set an example…which I think is the most important. WE get to choose our attitude and outlook.
I decided in sixth grade that I wasn’t going to be like the teacher soured on life. It was such a turn off…and I got to witness up close and personal her reputation among the students. Now I realize…her peers probably felt the same way about her. The way we embrace life…our outlook and attitude is something we wear and it is visible to all.
I am 53 and I have never seen a negative, sour attitude attract anyone! It’s repelling! Don’t get me wrong…I haven’t been perfect in the area of cheerfulness always….life and its challenges get to everyone…..me included. But we can be conscious of God and His ability to help us have better attitudes. He can give us a joyful heart when we spend time with Him….thus helping us to live out loud the scriptures above….it is a choice!
“Learn the sweet magic of a cheerful face.” ~Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.
“Cheerfulness and contentment are great beautifiers and are famous preservers of youthful looks.” ~Charles Dickens