Most of my mentors these days are age six and younger.
While entirely unaware, these mentors regularly reveal mysteries of the human heart, including capacities long forgotten or ignored. They remind us of how God created us, and consequently, what has been lost.
For example, what is “wonder” and how to respond to it.
On September 19th, my grandson Jeffery David (I’m still negotiating name order) entered this world prematurely at 29-weeks and barely three pounds. His first car ride was an ambulance to the Newborn Intensive Care Unit, where he spent two whole months (with mom and dad alternating shifts all day).The night before Jeffery David’s homecoming, his two sisters, sensing the moment, excitedly began preparations for the grand arrival. Harper (5) would first meet him after kindergarten, so she picked out a special outfit for school that “Jeffery David liked.” By pure coincidence, it happened to be Harper’s favorite dress, too, along with matching sparkle socks and pretty pink shoes. Something compelled Harper to honor this fragile little boy.
Together with Everly (3), the two sisters spent an entire afternoon making their home like Jeffrey David’s world so it would be familiar to him: they washed, diapered, and make-believe bottle-fed every stuffed animal and doll in the house—a population equal to that of their zip code. Then this crowd of freshly cleaned and fed friends was carefully positioned by the door to greet their little brother. Notice: Little girls responding to the felt need to honor.
There’s something insightful here about the makeup of the human heart.
We are all hardwired to recognize and respond to wonder involuntarily. We can’t help it. But the truth is, we have largely become numb to wonder (marvel/amazement/astonishment/awe) because we are too busy, distracted, cynical, analytical, self-absorbed, or exhausted to pay attention.
This Christmas, put down whatever politics or policies preoccupy your life and live in the wonder and simplicity of a baby, born in a barn, and what it means to have a God that is both with us and for us in life. What would it look like for you to honor Jesus this Christmas?