Saturday, September 18, 2010

Persistent Love

While parked in Taco Bell’s parking lot one afternoon, waiting for my daughter to get her after-school bean burrito, a small vehicle wheeled in beside me and screeched to a halt. A frustrated-looking woman, carrying a Taco Bell sack, got out and went inside. A mixed up order, no doubt.

Remaining in the car was a little boy, about six years old, who looked as if he had been crying. Hoping to change his mood a bit, I flashed him my best and brightest smile. He didn’t smile back.

Undaunted by his lack of response, I smiled a second time.

Again, the little boy stood motionless, staring at me as though I had just arrived from outer space.

Not wanting to give up so easily, I smiled a third time.

To my dismay, the little boy kept scowling, as if to say: “You can’t make me smile, so quit trying.”

But I didn’t quit trying. I smiled again, unscathed.

After the fourth smile, the little boy ducked out of sight.

But not for long.

Unable to resist the cheerful lady in the dirty brown car, he inched his head up slowly until his eyes met mine. I smiled again, fully expecting him to duck again, but he didn’t. Instead, he opened his hand and showed me a nickel. A peace offering, perhaps?

Not a chance. Before the fifth smile ever left my face, the little boy hit the floorboard, more boisterous than ever.

About that time, the woman with the mixed up order returned. As soon as she got in the car, the little boy hopped up and sheepishly glanced my direction.

He seemed more relaxed than before, and I smiled a sixth time, hopeful. I wasn’t disappointed.

Not only did the little boy return my smile, he gave me a curt little wave as they backed out and drove away. I waved back, pleased that my persistence had finally paid off.

Once upon a time, my heavenly Father smiled at my cold and callous heart. Each time he smiled, I ducked for cover, saying, “You can’t make me smile, so quit trying.”

But my Father didn’t quit trying. He kept smiling my direction, hoping his prodigal child would come running home soon.

Romans 8:38-39 says, "For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God."

It doesn't matter how bad we've been or how lost we are, our Father’s love persists and persists.

Linking to Spiritual Sundays, where good bloggers blog about good things.


  1. :) I'm all smiles! Bless your heart.

  2. Oh, Gayle, isn't that the truth and sometimes we act like naughty children just trying to get our way. How wonderful to be reminded that my naughtiness can not outdo His Love!

  3. awesome post. I can see that little boy...and I remember my own dance with God...refusing to smile at His every attempt...have a great weekend. ☺

  4. Wonderful story, Gayle.


  5. I love this story and how you made the analogy of God "smiling" on us! Beautiful!

    Hugs, Carolyn ~ Cottage Sunshine

  6. Isn't it amazing the power of a smile!
    But what is even more important is that you didn't give up.
    We all can learn from your persistence.

  7. It's amazing what a smile can do!
    Have a wonderful Sunday.
    IN HIM,
    Karen@Places of my Heart

  8. I really enjoyed that story. I could SEE the whole outcome!Great! You gave that little boy a happy day I bet he will always remember. You also gave us the readers the clue to pass it on no matter how the acceptance. Well done!! Hug!

  9. Yeur persistence is an inspiration. Thank you for sharing and for reminding us of our Father's love.

  10. What a touching story...and I am sure that little boy needed to see your smile by the sounds of it. Blessings.

  11. Thank you for sharing this...
    and for sharing your smile :D
    God Bless You.


  12. What a sweet story. Thanks for sharing. Wishing you a blessed Sunday!


  13. One word for this post AWESOME!!!

  14. Persistance certainly paid off. I loved that story. Taco Bell is my son's favorite eating place. Loved this story. Thank you for sharing it with us. I love that you kept smiling at the little boy. If I'm ever in this situation I hope I remember this and smile.

  15. I loved this story. Some days at work I will try to make the grumpy customer's smile,it's not always easy.
    Thank-you for this story,

  16. What a wonderful reminder of God's unfailing love. Thank you for this great story and the blessing it brings.

  17. I love this story, Gayle.
    I'm the little boy in the car too.
    I'm so glad that God is a persistant God who kept leaning forward with that face toward ME.

    Thanks for the reminder this morning that He is persistantly smiling at those whom I LOVE and pray for.

  18. Actually, it's afternoon. LOL
    My morning got sucked into errand land.