Just down the street from my house is a pond and I try to make it a point to walk there at least once a week, even if it’s just to sit for a few minutes of contemplation. I stare at the water and the ducks. I watch the people come by or sit there, all in their own form of contemplation or conversation. They walk or stroll or jog by taking in the cool breeze, perhaps listening to music, or focusing on their exercise. Some just go by without much of a look at the beauty of the pond or the orange of the sun setting. But one evening a boy, around 8 or 9, came scooting by on a Razor-like scooter and stopped suddenly at the edge of the path. He began looking out to the sailboats tied up at the dock, bobbing in the water. As his sister came by on her bike he said, “Hey, look at the boats!” “Who cares!” his sister scoffed as she sped past. But he just kept looking out in fascination. His little brother followed on his scooter. “Look at the boats.” His brother stopped for a moment, glanced, and then encouraged him to move on.
The sailboats weren’t anything remarkable, but in that moment something made that young boy take a pause from his childlike playful rushing. He didn’t stop being childlike. In fact, it was childlike wonder that drew him to the boats and he did his best effort to share the moment with his brother and sister. But no luck. They couldn’t see what was so great. Sometimes grace works that way. We experience a moment of God that others can’t see or understand. It’s a private moment with the divine.
“It is God who clothes the wild grass – grass that is here today and gone tomorrow…” (Matthew 6:30a)
Though he may not have been able to consciously express it, maybe deep within him the boy understood this truth of this scripture verse: All things are passing. Cherish the moment of grace when you find it.
How often is it that in our day to day we speed past potential grace or beauty. We rush by God who is literally right next to us. We do it when we never take a moment to see the person driving the other car or when we fail to look at the nature around us. The divinity found in creation is God’s personality expressed. God is under our very nose, yet so many times we fall slave to the immediacy the world demands.
So what can we do? Sometimes it takes building those pause moments into our schedule before we can naturally make it a part of our being. Perhaps an alarm on your phone can remind you to pay attention to the God who surrounds you at every moment. Jesus encourages us to see the world through childlike eyes because children have less inhibiting them from seeing the joys and beauty around us. Find a way to stop and “see the sailboats” like that boy.
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Music by Kevin MacLeod