How to Make Jesus Smile

Chuck was a new man.

After 30 years of attending church, Jesus rescued him and gave him new life. Everything was new to Chuck (not his real name). He was excited about Jesus and all he was doing in his life. And one day he told me something that made me smile and I’m sure it made Jesus smile.

Chuck’s business partner had recently left, and the business had been struggling. On top of all the company’s other troubles, a disgruntled customer was suing them for a large amount of money – enough to sink the company if they lost the suit. Chuck was certain they had served the customer with integrity, but going to court is like rolling the dice. You just don’t know what will happen.

On his way to the hearing Chuck prayed this prayer. “Lord Jesus, I pray that you will let things go my way today, but no matter what the outcome, I’m going to praise you either way.”

“I’m going to praise you either way.” When Chuck told me this, I felt like leaping for joy. Incredible – a new believer and he got it: God is good either way. God is sovereign, wise and loving either way. God is worthy of praise either way. This kind of faith is pleasing to God and glorifies him.

That is why David said, I will bless the Lord at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth (PS 34.1).

How pleasing it is to Christ when we decide to praise him at all times. It’s easy to praise God when everything goes our way. But when we praise him in the darkness and the desert, it shows that he alone is our satisfaction, joy and delight. How this honors him. We glorify Jesus when we trust him in hard times. So go ahead, make Jesus smile today. No matter what happens, praise him either way.

By the way, Chuck won the case.

I’m a pastor at Saving Grace Church in Indiana, PA. I’m married to Kristi, have 5 kids, and a growing number of grandkids. I enjoy songwriting, oil painting and coffee, not necessarily in that order.