Weekly Thought – April 29, 2014
Fred never tired of learning. He stayed open to seeing life. Even in his older age, he constantly asked questions, pursued wisdom, and explored the corners of his universe.
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Early one morning I listened to Carlos Fuentes, the South American novelist. He described the heart of a novel as “amazement.” I stay open to this concept all the time – I call it wonderment. It means looking openly at those things which cause within me a sense of awe and worship. Someone has said that the true mark of genius is not creating awe in others, but in being awed.
Most of us have a tendency to be cynical, closed-minded, disinterested, even bored. Concentrating on our knowledge rather than our ignorance, we lose our sense of awe. I like to think of “making friends with my ignorance.” What I do not know is my future playground. I don’t need to compare what I know to others; I need to compare what little I do know to the vast amount I do not. The more we learn, the more we realize we have to learn.
The more you look for wonder, the more you see. It’s a discipline. Too many people get jaded and say, “so what?” That is not the Biblical spirit. The Apostle Paul didn’t say, “so what?” – he said, “so THAT.” Paul had a vision and a sense of wonder in what God was doing.
You don’t need money to find wonderment. The poorest man in America can be amazed watching an ant carrying a stick. Some people are so overcome with what they can’t do for lack of money, They’re blinded to what they can do. Every human being can open his or her eyes to wonder in the world.
Two enemies of marveling are entertainment and acquisition. Entertainment satisfies our need to be outside ourselves. It becomes an anesthetic for our minds, dulling us to the excitement of watching real life. My family knows I take a dim view of extended TV viewing!
Acquisition gives us synthetic satisfaction. We use our energy and time planning and shopping for the next purchase. I am not opposed to beautiful things around us, but I am warning against the desire for the next painting, car, piece of furniture, or item of clothing to fill a hole.
I hope I never lose the simple wonder of childhood. I hope I never forget the joy of wondering how things work. And I hope I never fail to be grateful for the opportunity to go bed more ignorant than I woke up!
This week think about: 1) How friendly am I with my ignorance? 2) When was the last time I stopped to marvel? 3) What am I learning today?
Words of Wisdom: “The more we learn, the more we realize we have to learn.”
Wisdom from the Word: “God thunders with his voice in marvelous ways; he does great things beyond our understanding.” (Job 37:5 NET Bible)