Losing the Wonder

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.
Josh

8 Comments

  • efchristi says:

    WOW!!

    While it is true, we lose some of the wonder and take some things for granted as we grow older, we do not all of it. As we age the things that give us wonder change because we have seen most of it.

    I am 68 years old and I can truthfully tell you I have not lost the wonder. I still am in awe every time I see the trees burst out in bloom every spring and every time I see new born babies. I smile with glee when the flowers bloom and the baby birds fly from their nests. I marvel that every time I add water and dirt to a little seed it grows into a hearty plant. I know these things are going to happen, but I never fail to see the miracle of birth and growth.

    I tell my wife several times a day how much I love her and remind myself how lucky I am God brought her into my life. I watch the sunset on the horizon every evening and get up early every morning just to see the magic of the beautiful sunrise. I do act the fool once in a while, though I do have to admit, not often enough.

    I think, for what it is worth, as we grow older we find things that give us wonder seem to fall to the wayside because we have seen so much I our lifetime. I also think we have the tendency to take some things for granted, but I also feel we see things in a different light than we did when we were young. The magic of sunrise means more to us older folks than the glorious sunsets just because we are blessed with another day.

    I think most young people forget the wonder because they have so much going on in their daily lives. You fail to give yourself time to see the wonder going on around you every minute of every day. In fact, you are completely unaware of your surroundings most of the time. You need to stop once in a while and smell the flowers and look at the beauty of nature. Then you will remember the wonder you have lost!

    Walk daily with God at your side.

    Ed

  • Kim Melancon says:

    <3

  • BigSkyKen says:

    Rediscovering the “wonder” can indeed be life changing. Great message, Josh!

  • Chris says:

    one of the things that always amazes me when I stop to think about it is that God loves to give us pleasure. He didn’t have to make the sky vast and amazing or flowers beautiful. We would have never known the difference. But he delights in our delight just the way we delight in our childrens’. I love that.

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