There is nothing more joyous to watch than a child experience things for the first time. Tonight, I was throwing a football to Hayden from across the room and he thought it to be magical. Never in his short 16 months of life has he experienced a ball hurling straight toward him. He continually squealed with delight.
It is like that with a lot of things. Yesterday, he figured out how to “fall down” and proceeded to do it over and over. Today, he had an ice cream cone all to himself for the first time. I am convinced that in that moment you would be hard pressed to convince him that there could be anything in life better than ice cream. The wonder of it all, the newness of creation, the unfamiliarity with disappointment all culminate into smile after smile plastered across his face.
Isn’t it interesting to watch how a child, filled with wonder, will engage in the same activity time after time without growing weary of it? Recently, I heard Ravi Zacharias speaking of his experience raising his three children. He spoke of the differences between reading a story to a three year old, a seven year old, and a ten year old. The three year old found mystery in the line, “And the boy walked up to the house.” It took more to engage the seven year old, but fascination ensued with, “And the boy walked up to the house and opened the door.” For the ten year old, this was old hat. It takes a little more to intrigue him. He was pulled into the story with, “The boy walked up to the house, opened the door, and a lion jumped out.” This is a simple example, but it captures the essence of how we operate.
The older we get, the less we see the wonder in life. We lose heart. We take life for granted. Excitement is traded for familiarity. Adventure falls by the way of what is safe. Busyness leaves little room for finding delight in the simple. Making money minimizes the importance of relationships.
I was reminded of how transient life is today, as a good friend of mine was in a serious accident. We have the tendency to think that time will march on with us in tow, along with those we love, but eventually we will no longer keep time with the parade. What a shame to find ourselves at the end of the parade no longer enjoying the wonderment of life. What a pity it would be to have forgotten how good life is and the joy to be found in the simple.
When was the last time we attempted to look at the world with a fresh set of eyes? When was the last time we laughed at the simple? How long has it been since we acted foolish, just for the fun of it? Has it been a while since we told those we care for how much we love them? Have we kissed our spouse long and hard lately just because we can? Have we found ourselves enraptured by sunsets that paint the sky in brilliant hues of orange or soft shades of periwinkle? How long since we spent hours just talking to the people we hold dear?
Life is fragile. We break so easily. Let’s not lose the wonder.
Walk good. Live wise. Be blessed.