There’s a scene that’s replayed itself several times in my mind the last three months.
I was visiting my daughter, savoring an early-morning cup of coffee in the kitchen, when my three-year old grandson Caleb suddenly materialized in the doorway. ‘I had an AWESOME dream last night!” he enthused. The light in his eyes and the wonder in his face touched me. ‘Come tell papa your awesome dream,” I invited lifting him into my arms. He began to tell me about this dream and, well, I’m not sure I completely followed””but it was awesome, I assure you.
I wish I could get excited about a simple dream. Takes a lot to thrill us today doesn’t it? We’ve seen Jedi warriors fighting while doing backflips on lava flows. Old John Wayne can’t match that. We travel more and think about a world that seems to become more complicated each day. Simple telephones don’t do much for us these days, unless they are command control centers capable of sending men to the moon as well as receiving calls.
Somehow, I feel that the more I’m like little Caleb, enthused and amazed about simple things, the more I see God in life. Can you remember how certain colors used to move and excite you when you were little? How important friends were? How heroic your pot-bellied dad was? How good grandma’s apple pie was? We grow less childish with age. Some of that is good and some not so good.
For some of us Christians, it takes an incredible answer to prayer every day to make us thankful and joyful. Otherwise our lives are dull and gray and we love for some spark in our lives. Hey, if it takes an earth-shaking blessing to move me with wonder, I’m standing way too far from God. Kids are ‘fresh out of God’s oven” and they see Him more eaisy. When I’m close to Him, He smiles at me in the sunrise. When I’m close, He whispers to me through His Word (sometimes He shouts!) When I’m close, my heart softens when I think of the Lord Jesus and what He did on the Cross for me. Sometimes I see Him in my Christian brother or in my wife sleeping beside me or in my grandchild’s enthusiasm. Sometimes I feel His broken heart for a hurting world and I see Him in a song of worship on Sunday morning. But, when I get preoccupied, I forget to look for Him and I forget to be thankful. Unthankfulness is a horrible sin. It takes all the wonder out of life and we can no longer see God, though He stands in front of us like a starburst.
“For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools …” Rom. 1: 21, 22, NIV.
When I forget wonder and thankfullness I open the door to all kinds of sin in my life. (Take a stroll through Romans 1:21-28 to see what happens. Especially check out the Message version). Maybe it wouldn’t be bad if we asked God to allow us to see the world with a child’s eyes again. It could really make a difference.
‘Your eyes are windows into your body. If you open your eyes wide in wonder and belief, your body fills up with light. If you live squinty-eyed in greed and distrust, your body is a dank cellar. If you pull the blinds on your windows, what a dark life you will have!” (Matt. 6:22-23, The Message)
Hey, have you seen anything ‘AWESOME” lately? ______________________________ Hmmm … “You can’t have roots and wings.” One character to his wife in the movie, ‘Sweet Home Alabama.”