The Man Who Never Smiles

  I met a man a few years ago that I thought was one of the most amazing and interesting men I’ve ever met before in my life. His name is Lestor. Lestor lives in a quaint little town in Alabama on Mobile Bay called Fairhope. 

Fairhope is still to this day my favorite town in the world. You only need to spend a few days there to see why. The beautiful sunsets, amazing people, and one of a kind coffee shops make that town what it is. Simply stunning. 

And every morning around 8am… You could find Lestor sitting in the coffee shop… Front Pocket full of random things. Waiting to picks fight with anyone who wanted to engage him. He was loud, ruthless, and at the very core of who he was… He was angry. I never saw him smile. 

You see on the surface… When you got to know him… Is story was incredible. He had every reason to smile.  His father passed away and left him 26 Million Dollars! He had a huge home in Mississippi. And every classic Corvette you could imagine. He owned a significant portion of the French Quater in New Orleans and now his only job is to sit in a coffee shop everyday and talk with people. 

He had everything you could possibly think of that would make him happy… But he wasn’t. He was angry. And all the anger came as a result of his Father. 

His father was an angry man. He wanted nothing to do with Lestor as a kid. When Lestor was old enough his father sent him off to Military school. And from that moment on… It seems as though Lestor inherited more then just money from his father. But also anger and bitterness. 

Lestor never smiled because he never saw his father smile!

That’s a sad story for sure. But to be honest… A part of us can be found in Lestor’s story. There have been plenty of moments in my life where I thought God was all about getting me from the beginning of my life… To the end of my life… Safely! And along the way there wasn’t to much fun to be had. I had to be serious… Because life was serious. 

In my own mind I viewed God as the Man who never Smiled!

So I forfeited my right to have fun because I thought God wasn’t having fun. I thought it was all about accomplishing the mission. I was getting the job done without experiencing the joy that comes from my salvation!

Well I was completely wrong!

He is a God of great joy and peace! He is a God who smiles at us and dances over us. He wasn’t the problem. I was the problem. So now I’m on a journey to enjoy God. To smile with him. 

I’m not sure what ever happened to Lestor. I’ve been gone now for a few years. My prayer is that he forgave his father and is currently sitting in that coffee shop smiling with his friends!

Brandon Hester