Am I Really A “Happy Person?”


A number of years ago I was reminded of an important principle when my wife and I visited a rural town in Pennsylvania.  We were sitting in an ice cream shop in Strasburg on a Saturday night enjoying good food and looking forward to an ice cream treat. My wife said to me “Look at how everyone is smiling. That man over there just held up his big sundae to his wife and smiled.” It was true. We watched as person after person, young or old smiled at each other as they were handed their ice cream treat. It brought me back to the summer of 1978 when, just after being married,  I had worked for an ice cream company.  My job was to open new accounts in the Washington D.C. metro area in restaurants and small cafes. Inevitably when I would enter a place of business and presented my card to the business owner they would joke by saying, “Do you have samples of your ice cream?” Not knowing that I was carrying a bag of dry ice filled with samples,  I would surprise them by saying “Yes, do you want some?” What do you think they said? Not one person ever turned me down. If I didn’t get the sale I left the person smiling. Ice Cream has that kind of effect on people.

Can people have the same impact on people as ice cream?  Sure! Haven’t you ever met someone who seems to carry a smile? They have a way of making everyone else around them enjoy life.  I’ve never met anyone who doesn’t have any problems, but some choose  to not wear it on their faces.

In a talk entitled “A Reason to Smile”,  by Joe J. Christensen, he said this:

“Ask yourself, Am I really a happy person? If you are not and if it is difficult for you to smile, then think about it. Some of it may come from recognizing that difficulties are part of life. There are ups and downs. That fact reminds me of a story shared by Marian D. Hanks.

“A father is aboard an airplane on a short business trip. He has with him his five-year-old son and is almost wishing his son were not there because it is a very rough trip. There are downdrafts and updrafts and head winds alternating with tailwinds, and some passengers are feeling a bit queasy. Apprehensively, the father glances at his son and finds him grinning from ear to ear. ‘Dad’, he says, ‘do they do this just to make it fun for the kids?'(Changing Channels, “Ensign, Nov.1990,38)

Sometimes we just need to be more childlike in our perspective of life’s daily happenings. Let us try to be like Ice Cream,  and make people smile when they come into contact with us.  The wonderful thing about ice cream and people is that they come in so many flavors.  It really doesn’t matter what flavor of a person we are because if we choose to bless the lives of others, like manna from heaven, the taste we offer is delicious for all.

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