Do You Make God Smile?
Updated: Sep 2, 2019
Chan Gin Kai
And a voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.” (Luke 3:22)
I know God loves me. But is He pleased with me? Do I make God smile?
Although Jesus is sinless, he approached John the Baptist to be baptised, telling John, “it is proper for us to do this to fulfil all righteousness” (Matthew 3:15). He didn’t need to, but he wanted to, because it was proper, proper to fulfil all righteousness. As he prayed after his baptism, the “Holy Spirit descended on him in bodily form like a dove” (Luke 3:22). It must have been an awe-inspiring sight for everyone who saw it.
And then came my favourite part, a voice from heaven declaring to Jesus and everyone else present, “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased”. I imagine the sonorous voice of Morgan Freeman, imposing yet gentle, powerful yet loving. But what’s more important than the voice is the content of what was said; God declared His love for Jesus, and how pleased He was with him. I can imagine the proud smile on God’s face as He said that.
I’ve always wondered, what would God say if He decides to do the same for me? I am certain that He will say, “You are my son, whom I love”. I am very secure in God’s incredible love for me.
But what I’m less confident about is the second part; would He also say, “With you I am well pleased”? Are the things I do pleasing to God? Does the way I live my life make Him feel proud? Do I make God smile?
I used to mentor some campus students from church, and my meetings with them were often like Yoda to his young padawans, imparting wisdom and sharing from decades of experience as a disciple of Christ. I was less cryptic than Yoda of course, and I didn’t get my sentences jumbled up either. But there was this meeting where our roles were reversed, when the padawan taught the Jedi master. I don’t know if he even remembers it, but what he said that day is now engraved forever in my heart... “I just want to make God smile”.
I was dumbstruck. My advice and analogies, examples and exhortations suddenly dried up. The innocent and childlike sincerity he had as he uttered that statement made far more sense than all the theological insights I had shared with him that day. He had found the essence; he got it right. He grasped what it means to have a relationship with God. Christianity is nothing complicated; he simply wants to make God smile. I don’t know if he learnt anything from me that day, but I certainly learnt from him, and my heart was inspired.
What would God say to you if He decides one day to make that sudden declaration? We can all be sure that He’ll say He loves you. But would He also say that He is well pleased with you? Do you make God smile?
Chan Gin Kai
Gin Kai is a film producer who believes in the power of media to inspire positive changes. He has spearheaded disaster relief and capacity building projects in impoverished communities across Asia. In church, he serves as a mentor to young professionals in the EDGE Ministry. He describes himself as "just a sinner who wants to get right with God".