Fix Your Face, part 1 (and maybe the only part)

"Every man over forty is responsible for his face." Abraham Lincoln (Image from iStock)

“Every man over forty is responsible for his face.”
Abraham Lincoln
(Image from iStock)

“You better fix your face, young man, and you better fix it now,” said Mom to her son who looked to be about four years old.

I turned from the clothes rack where I was shopping to see a little boy shuffling behind his mother. He pulled his hood over his head, crossed his arms, and pouted out his lips like I do mine when life isn’t going my way.

His face tickled me and so did his mom’s orders. But I also understood his pain, especially when his mother threatened to take away the next day’s fun activities. Her warning reminded me of the pity trap I fall into when my own face needs fixing, but I’d rather feel sorry for myself.

The little boy’s scene looked a lot like God and me when I talked with him last October about relocating closer to our kids and our first grandbaby. Circumstances made it obvious the answer was “no.”  

I pouted. I cried. I accused God of taking away my fun.

The scene also looked similar to the day, just a few weeks later, when I heard the news that our son and future daughter-in-law were moving for two years to Oklahoma City.

Again I pouted. Again I cried.  Again I accused God of taking away my fun.

And when __________  (I can fill in the blank with any number of situations when God’s will hasn’t aligned with my own, and I’ve pouted and I’ve cried and I’ve accused).

But those times are a changin’ because I am a changin’. I’m fixing my face and I’m fixing it now.

Here is my “powder room” list:

  • I’m practicing being satisfied with God’s answers in light of choosing “content” as my word for 2014, knowing that he always knows best. Yes, always … trust me, I’m going on 56 years of hindsight.
  • I’m recapturing my faith. Thanks to friend, Lis Morgan, and her word “recapture,” I’m focusing on and praying for the restoration of the faith that I once lived by (but lost) for at least a portion of those 56 years.
  • I’m saying grateful things more than griping, and I’m again daily making a 13-item gratitude list.

Does your face need fixing? Are you fixing it now? Care to share tips from your “powder room”?

WRite wHere I’m supposed to be – I believe the quote from Abe Lincoln and I’m working on my makeover now.


17 responses »

    • A fellow tantrum thrower, Molly Jo. So happy to meet you! 🙂 I think when we share the same traits, we’re immediately thrown (yep, a bit punny) together as answerability (because I’m not that crazy about the word “accountability”) partners. I hope you’ll be mine if you see me throwing fits on FB or in my blog posts … please remind me again of my own words and of God’s grace.

      Also, I hope you remind me to never use two sets of parentheses again in a sentence, but it’s late and I’m tired. Thanks so much for stopping by!

    • I can’t believe that, Peggy. I’m always impressed with your positive attitude. I love the phrase “call to gratitude” – I need it daily, sometimes minutely. 🙂 And it really works when I practice it.

  1. Oh, Kim, even as I laughed while I read this post … I thought about the reflection in my mirror as of late.
    Needed to fix my face a bit.
    (Although the phrase around here was always “Change your face.” A bit more dramatic, I know. CHANGE it? Like swap it out????)

    • Beth, “Change your face” made me laugh out loud. Sometimes I wish I could swap mine, especially during the past five years. It’s been rough to look in the mirror some of those weeks and months, but the mirror is coming around.

      Love that we’re sharing the powder room – you know, girls love to go in pairs. 🙂

  2. The parental command we received was “wipe that look off your face.” I am here to tell you that swiping your hand in front of your face followed by a smile was not a well-received response! When I tried to think about if I’d pouted about anything recently, I was barraged by mental pictures of less-than-gracious mental responses to situations – as if God can’t read my mind if I have a smile on my face! Back to the gratitude journal for me, too.

  3. Kim, I loved your post and enjoyed reading good ole Abe’s quote, “Every man over 40 is responsible for his face.” What wisdom he had. You should see my pouty face. I love your powder room list. Especially the gratitude part, it rings close to home. For a year, I kept a gratitude journal along with the ladies in the book club I was attending. Each week when we’d meet we would read off ten items from our journal. I have often enjoyed going back and reading the little things that I so take for granted each day. Even the often annoying sounds of a neighbor’s dog barking. You’ve inspired me to open my journal and once again pen gratitude. It heightens my senses to God’s creation and those surprises He places in our path each day. Thanks for your gift of inspiration!

    • Beth, I love the idea of keeping a gratitude journal with others, then sharing it weekly. That would encourage me to write my list even when I’m tempted to abandon the practice. You also have the gift of inspiration … I hope you know that.

  4. Pingback: Fix Your Face, part 2 (when you fall on your face) | S. Kim Henson's blog

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